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Penn ACLU: Fairness is Good Business

March 16, 2009

Harrisburg, PA - The push is on for equality in Pennsylvania, and hundreds are expected to jam the State Capitol Tuesday to support a measure that would protect LGBT Pennsylvanians against discrimination. Under current state law, people can be fired based on their sexual orientation, and Andy Hoover of the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania says that's unfair and it's bad business.

He says there are 27 companies on the "Fortune 500" list, and all of them already prohibit the discrimination that the bill would ban generally.

"The business community recognizes that they need to do this to stay competitive to attract good workers, and that's what we need to do here in Pennsylvania."

Hoover says these proposed protections can be a powerful economic stimulus.

"When people make decisions about where they are going to work, where they are going to live, they take these kind of things into consideration."

Hoover says all the surrounding states either already have similar protections or are considering them. Thus, he says, if Pennsylvania fails to act, the state will be at an economic disadvantage.

The rally at the Capitol is being dubbed "Rock the Dome." Organizers say they have 77 co-sponsors for the bill.

Opponents say additional protections are not needed and approval could cause a flood of requests for other protections.

Glen Gardner, Public News Service - PA