From the Office of Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi

Pelosi: 'White House Has Responsibility to Enforce Non-Discrimination Policies'

March 31, 2004

Washington, D.C. -- House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today on the Bush Administration's removal of long standing references on the Office of Special Counsel Web site regarding federal policies barring discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation:

"I have long fought for equal rights for lesbians and gays in all sectors of employment -- federal, state, local, and the private sector.

"The actions of Special Counsel Scott Bloch are not only needlessly divisive, they are simply wrong as a matter of law. It is the responsibility of government to defend and protect the civil rights of all Americans and to enforce non-discrimination policies.

"Mr. Bloch's willingness to tolerate discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is contrary to federal law, which has long been held by the Office of Special Counsel during Administrations of both political parties to prohibit discrimination in the federal workplace on the basis of sexual orientation.

"I call on President Bush to denounce this blatant act of discrimination, and to immediately restore workplace protections as required by law.

"It is unacceptable to use an ideological or political agenda to subvert years of settled interpretation of federal personnel policies and statutes. Once again, this Administration has sought to divide the American people for political purposes. The American people deserve better."




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