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52% of Americans now covered by sexual orientation non-discrimination laws

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I attended a panel about a week ago on employment discrimination in the LGBT community. One of the panelists, Prof. Marieka Klawitter, an economist at the University of Washington, showed some nifty slides that track the growing number of employment non-discrimination laws throughout the country. More than 50% of the country is now covered by laws banning sexual orientation discrimination in the public and/or private sectors.* Prof. Klawitter was kind enough to let me share them with you. See below for decade-by-decade progress in action.

The circles represent local ordinances and are calibrated according to the size of the population covered. So Los Angeles is a big circle; Portland, Maine is a small one. Where states have enacted laws, the entire state is filled in. Blue means that the laws only apply to public sector employment. Red means that both public and private sectors are covered.





*To date, Prof. Klawitter has not compiled maps related to gender identity protections, although she referred me to these stats from the NGLTF showing that 41% of the population is covered by private-sector trans-inclusive laws. Progress is being made on that front, as well, as evidenced by recent legislative developments Hawaii and Nevada.

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