President Donald Trump on Monday signed
an executive order that effectively guts a 2014 executive order
signed by then-President Barack Obama barring federal contractors
from discriminating against LGBT workers.
The order, titled the Presidential
Executive Order on the Revocation of Federal Contracting Executive
Orders, revokes the requirement that federal contractors prove
they've complied with federal laws banning discrimination based on
sexual orientation and gender identity.
The regulations in the Fair Pay and
Safe Workplaces order have yet to take effect due to an ongoing
lawsuit filed last year by a Texas association of builders and
Claudia Center, a disability rights
attorney with the ACLU, told NBC News that the new order sends a
message that the Trump administration will look the other way at
“It definitely sends a message that
this administration does not prioritize these laws, or think that
investigating compliance is important,” Center
In January, the White House denied
rumors that it was planning to reverse Obama's order.
“President Donald J. Trump is
determined to protect the rights of all Americans, including the
LGBTQ community,” the White House said in a statement. “President
Trump continues to be respectful and supportive of LGBTQ rights, just
as he was throughout the election. The president is proud to have
been the first ever GOP nominee to mention the LGBTQ community in his
nomination acceptance speech, pledging then to protect the community
from violence and oppression. The executive order signed in 2014,
which protects employees from anti-LGBTQ workplace discrimination
while working for federal contractors, will remain intact at the
direction of President Donald J. Trump.”
Camilla Taylor of Lambda Legal told NBC
News that without enforcement such protections are meaningless.
“The threat of loss of a federal
contract is an incredibly powerful way of making sure companies
follow the law,” Taylor said.
Ironically, Obama for years resisted
pressure to sign such an order, saying that a law was more durable
and less likely to be reversed by a future president opposed to LGBT