PNS Daily Newscast - January 17, 2019 

Speaker Pelosi sends a message to Trump – No State of the Union in Congress while shutdown continues. Also on the Thursday rundown: federal employees in Michigan to rally against the shutdown. Plus a Green New Deal in New York raises the bar for clean energy.

Daily Newscasts

Matthew Shepard Act Arrives in Congress

April 19, 2007

The Matthew Shepard story is in the news again, this time as part of the push for positive change in protecting people from hate-motivated violence. Clergy from Wyo. have just returned from Washington, D.C. where they talked about the recently-introduced "Matthew Shepard Act," which would help local law enforcement investigate and prosecute hate crimes. Retired hospital chaplain Bob Spencer is with Wyoming Equality. He just returned from the capitol, where he has been promoting the bill, and he likes how it helps local law enforcement deal with hate crimes.

"It would open up the FBI and federal laboratories, and also some funding for local governments."

The bill would also allow the Department of Justice to investigate and prosecute certain bias-motivated crimes based on the victim's actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or a disability. Current law only includes race, color, religion or national origin.

Spencer adds that there's pending legislation that would update federal laws on workplace discrimination, a type of discrimination he calls subtle but powerful.

"There's already an Employment Non-Discrimination Act, but it doesn't cover GLBT people, and it doesn't cover a lot of people with disabilities."

Deborah Smith/Eric Mack, Public News Service - WY