President Obama made good on his June 16 promise that he would ban federal contractors from discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) workers and job applicants. An executive order signed July 21 applies to companies with contracts worth $10,000 or more.
“Millions of our fellow citizens wake up and go to work with the awareness that they could lose their job, not because of anything they do or fail to do, but because of who they are—lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender. And that’s wrong,” Obama said at a White House ceremony.
Eighteen states already have laws prohibiting employers from discriminating against employees and applicants because of LGBT status. According to the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law, which tracks sexual-orientation bias issues, almost all of the nation’s 50 largest government contractors already prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.
The executive order went into effect immediately. The Department of Labor has until late October to issue implementing regulations.
Find a fact sheet on the executive order at the White House's website.