Florida governor deliberately excludes LGBTQ people from nondiscrimination policy

Representative Ron DeSantis addresses a crowd while President Donald Trump watches at a rally in Tampa, Florida, on July 31, 2018

Representative Ron DeSantis addresses a crowd while President Donald Trump watches at a rally in Tampa, Florida, on July 31, 2018 Shutterstock

New Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Republican, has issued a nondiscrimination executive order for state employees that deliberately excludes LGBTQ people.

“Equality Florida is deeply disappointed to see that LGBTQ employees and contractors have been left out of the Governor’s executive order,” said Joe Saunders, Senior Political Director for Equality Florida.

“It’s hard to believe that Governor DeSantis and his staff are not aware of the LGBTQ communities call for these protections following the Pulse tragedy and therefore it is hard to interpret this as anything less than a purposeful omission.

The newly elected governors of Wisconsin and Michigan also issued nondiscrimination orders upon assuming office. Both included sexual orientation and gender identity in the protections.

Before leaving office after the last election, Republican governors in Michigan and Ohio also added protections that covered LGBTQ state workers.

“As Governors across the country establish these critical protections for LGBTQ families, this order draws a stark contrast,” Saunders said.

Former Florida governor Rick Scott, also a Republican, pledged to add the protections following the mass shooting at Pulse nightclub that left 49 LGBTQ people dead and dozens wounded. Scott never followed through on his promise to protect the community.

“It’s hard to believe that Gov. DeSantis and his staff are not aware of the LGBTQ community’s call for these protections following the Pulse tragedy and therefore it is hard to interpret this as anything less than a purposeful omission,” Saunders concluded.

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