HB 300 is making decent progress.
By the slimmest of margins, a House panel has approved Rep. Dan Frankel's bill to ban discrimination in housing and jobs against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.
The State Government Committee voted today by a margin of 12 to 11 — Democrats in favor and Republicans opposed — to send House Bill 300 to the full House.
“Thousands of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people thank (the committee) for their commitment to basic fairness,'' said Jake Kaskey of Equality Advocates Pennsylvania.
Mr. Frankel, D-Squirrel Hill, is trying for a second time to get the bill enacted. This time he has 78 cosponsors in the House, or nine more than it did two years ago. He needs at least 102 votes to win House approval.
The measure would ban discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations based on a person's sexual orientation or gender identity. Currently, discrimination based on race, ethnicity, religious beliefs and several other factors is banned.
The bill has support from the state Human Relations Commission and the Value All Families Coalition but is opposed by the Pennsylvania Family Institute.
The institute contends the bill would “put at risk clergy, religious ministries or schools or child care centers, or even employers or business owners with religious beliefs, who may have moral objections to hiring homosexuals or transgendered/cross-dressers in the place of employment.''
The PG still needs to work on the whole religious angle. They seem determined to sell papers by tapping into a false arguement. Note the lack of quotes from religious folks who aren't bigots. Note the lack of quotes from bill opponents who aren't people of faith.
Still, the forward movement is good news. Keep paying attention.
Still no word from Onorato's camp regarding the cyber townhall meeting. No word from Ravenstahl folks on the LGBT Advisory Committee. On a good note, the Pirates did call me back.