Representative Dan Frankel introduced a
gay protections bill in the Pennsylvania House yesterday, Frankel
announced in a press release.
Frankel's bill would prohibit
discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity
or expression in the areas of housing, employment, and public
accommodations by amending the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act.
Frankel, a Democrat from Allegheny
County, said he has already gathered 78 co-sponsors from both
“This legislation is critical to
thousands of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Pennsylvanians
who are trying to work and have a roof over their heads, and it
enjoys substantial support from Pennsylvanians from every corner of
the Commonwealth,” Jake Kaskey, policy and outreach coordinator for
Equality Advocates Pennsylvania, said in a statement.
Frankel's office said the bill has
attracted 9 more co-sponsors than a 2007-08 attempt.
“The growing support for this
commonsense bill reflects that most Pennsylvanians already know being
gay or transgendered has nothing to do with a person's ability to fix
a car or computer, or show up on time to do a good day's work,”
Frankel said in his statement.
Thirteen Pennsylvania cities and
counties currently include sexual orientation and gender identity or
expression protections locally – including Philadelphia and
Pittsburgh, the state's largest cities – but nearly 80% of the
state's residents remain unprotected.
If passed, Pennsylvania would join the
ranks of twenty other states that already offer such protections.
A rally has been scheduled for March 17
in Harrisburg to promote the legislation.