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Activists weigh LGBT ballot drive after Supreme Court ruling

Associated Press

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Organizers of a Michigan ballot drive to prohibit discrimination against gay, lesbian and transgender people said Monday they are considering whether to continue following a big victory before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Fair and Equal Michigan started the ballot effort in January after years of being unable to pass LGBT protections through the Republican-led state Legislature. The proposal would change a 1976 civil rights law that bans discrimination based on sexual orientation or identity in employment, housing and public accommodations.

The Supreme Court ruled Monday that a key provision of a 1964 federal law that bars job discrimination due to sex encompasses bias against LGBT workers. The 6-3 decision does not directly affect discrimination in housing or public facilities.

Since 2018, the Michigan Civil Rights Commission has processed complaints about discrimination against people of certain sexual orientations and identities after releasing an interpretive statement that said such discrimination is a form of sex discrimination.

Sen. Jeremy Moss and Rep. Jon Hoadley, Democrats who are among the first openly gay members of the Legislature, said the “decision — from a conservative-led court, no less — ought to propel the Michigan Legislature to carry on this work and extend these employment protections to those in Michigan facing housing and public accommodation discrimination.”

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