Gay Marriage Advocates Push For Protection Against Discrimination
Celebrations among the gay marriage advocates in Pennsylvania was immediate after the Supreme Court ruling on Thursday.
One local group is focusing on smaller victories first, before tackling the ever controversial gay marraige battle.
It’s not specifically gay marriage rights that people in Lancaster are focusing on.
It’s protection banning discrimination against sexual orientation and gender identity.
“God bless america…” sang singers at the US Capitol on Thursday.
Gay marriage supporters feel a new sense of adrenaline today after a historical ruling on the national level.
“Are treated like anyone else,” says LGBT Caucus leader, Barry Russell.
But before local groups rush the Pennsylvania State Capitol, they want to focus on a push for overall equality as two non discrimination bills are currently being discussed in the House and Senate.
“In all the states that have affirmed marriage equality already, they did not do so without already having a non discrimination bill on the books,” says Russell.
Lancaster City has a non discrimination clause but step outside city lines and things are very different.
“Yes you can be fired from your job, you can be denied housing and you can be kicked out of a restaurant just because of how you’re perceived,” says Russell.
For some this is a very personal issue.
“Follow the golden rule, treat others as you want to be treated…that’s it in a nutshell,” says Sally Lyall.
Sally Lyall’s cousin was brutally beatened to the point that he was unrecognizable.
She says it was because he’s gay.
“It’s savagery unbelievable,” says Lancaster Democratic Chair, Sally Lyall.
Gay rights advocate Laurie Baulig says Thursday’s court ruling is like winning game one of the world series.
A small, but very proud moment.
“I really never even conceived of a day where we would have marriage equality…I hope to see it in my lifetime. I really do,” says Laurie Bauling.
As of Saturday evening, both House and Senate Bills did not have any action taken.
Those bills would add sexual orientation and gender identity in expression to an already exisiting non discrimination act.