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Transgender supporters to meet lawmakers to discuss discrimination

WASHINGTON -- Transgender people and their families and friends are gathering on Capitol Hill tomorrow to promote the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA).

On Tuesday, March 16, about 200 supporters are scheduled to discuss with legislators the problems of transgender discrimination.

ENDA, authored by U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, would extend protection against job discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Support for the act is great in the House of Representatives, with 198 co-sponsors joining Frank to support the measure. To date, this is the largest number of sponsors in support of legislation that would aid the LGBT community.

Great rates of discrimination have been reported among transgender people in the workplace.

According to the National Center for Transgender Equality, 97 percent of transgender people who responded to a survey reported experiencing some kind of work-related harassment. And 26 percent of those who took the survey reported being fired purely on the basis of being transgender.

An awards ceremony to honor this year’s award recipient and those who work for transgender equality will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, March 15, at the National Press Club. Bishop Yvette Flunder from City of Refuge United Church of Christ in San Francisco is the 2010 award recipient.