Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches
Statement on First Transgender Witness Appearing Before the U.S. Senate
Office of the Global Justice Institute
Metropolitan Community Churches
The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries
For Immediate Release 12 June 2012
Today Metropolitan Community Churches worldwide applauds the U.S. Senate (USA) for scheduling the first openly transgender person to testify before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP), regarding the need for employment protections. The Senate hearing is on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which would change federal law to prohibit employment discrimination against LGBT persons. While both chambers of the U.S. Congress have previously held hearings on ENDA, no Committee in the Congress has ever taken testimony from a transgender person.
MCC Moderator Rev. Elder Dr. Nancy Wilson said, “God is truly doing amazing things, in the face of those who devalue the dignity and worth of LGBT people. We congratulate Kylar Broadus for his brave and life changing work in employment law and business practice. His testimony today is nothing short of historic and his life’s work bears witness to the opportunities all people deserve regardless of gender identity and expression.” MCC also applauds Senate HELP Committee Chair Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) for scheduling the hearing and selecting Professor Broadus to testify.
Kylar Broadus is the founder of the Columbia, MO-based Trans People of Color Coalition and was among five witnesses who testified before the HELP Committee. He is an Associate Professor of Business at Lincoln University of Missouri. An attorney and activist, he has served as counsel to the Human Rights Campaign and sits on the Board of Directors for the National Black Justice Coalition.
MCC calls for a full vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, inclusive of protections for transgender persons, before both chambers of Congress. Central to our core values, MCC believes that all persons are created to reflect the image of God, and should be afforded all the protections of the law regardless of gender identity/expression or sexual orientation. We believe that there is dignity in work and that no barriers should be placed on those willing to enter the labor force. MCC churches worldwide know all too well the pain suffered by LGBT people and their families when workplace discrimination prohibits them from earning a living. Congress must act to ensure that all people, but especially LGBT people, have clear and proper federal protections from workplace discrimination. Passage of ENDA would make it so.
This statement prepared in conjunction with The Global Justice Institute, a partnership of Metropolitan Community Churches and The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries,
The Rev. Pat Bumgardner, Executive Director,
Mr. Kareem Murphy, Public Policy Team Member.
For more information about Metropolitan Community Churches, Marriage and Adoption Equality or the Global Justice Institute, contact The Rev. Dr. Jim Merritt: RevJim@RevJim.org or 407-722-1401.