Donald Trump Has Vowed To Uphold Protections For LGBTQ People

Photo: KENA BETANCUR/AFP/Getty Images.
In an official statement on Thursday, President Trump has vowed to continue to enforce an executive order signed by Barack Obama in 2014 to protect employees from anti-LGBTQ discrimination.

The news comes after rumors and speculation that Trump would issue an executive order allowing for anti-LGBTQ discrimination.

"The President is proud to have been the first ever GOP nominee to mention the LGBTQ community in his nomination acceptance speech, pledging then to protect the community from violence and oppression," the White House statement reads. "The executive order signed in 2014, which protects employees from anti-LGBTQ workplace discrimination while working for federal contractors, will remain intact at the direction of President Donald J. Trump."

In the past, Trump had pledged to sign the First Amendment Defense Act, which would allow businesses, landlords, and healthcare providers to refuse service to LGBTQ people based on religious beliefs — a fact that has not gone unnoticed by those who remain skeptical of Trump's agenda.

"Claiming ally status for not overturning the progress of your predecessor is a rather low bar," Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, told the New York Times in a statement. "LGBTQ refugees, immigrants, Muslims and women are scared today, and with good reason. Donald Trump has done nothing but undermine equality since he set foot in the White House."

While it remains to be seen what the future of LGBTQ rights will really look like under a Trump presidency, his history with LGBTQ issues has already inspired protest. Although this decision doesn't necessarily predict how Trump will handle wider discriminations towards the LGBTQ community, it's a step in the right direction.
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