Schleifer Announces Sweeping LGBTQ+ Rights Policy That Emphasizes Equality, Inclusion, and Justice For All Residents in Rockland and Westchester

Schleifer Will Push for Federal Civil Rights Protection, Invest in Public Health Initiatives, and Implement Legal Safeguards for LGBTQ+ Community

Schleifer: “LGBTQ+ Rights are Human Rights.”

White Plains, NY – Adam P. Schleifer, a Democratic Candidate for U.S. Congress in New York’s 17th District, announced his sweeping policy to strengthen and protect LGBTQ+ rights for all Rockland and Westchester residents. Specifically, he wants to codify LGBTQ+ equality through the Equality Act, which would provide federal Title VII protections under the Civil Rights Act. Such legislation would support anti-discrimination efforts in employment, education, and other federal services. Schleifer will also promote inclusion with greater resources towards public health research and services that support LGBTQ+ persons in Rockland and Westchester Counties. 

Schleifer emphasized the continued need to use existing federal laws and law-enforcement authority to protect the LGBTQ+ communities, along with all others, from hate crime and domestic terror. One such law, the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, prohibits and provides for prosecution for violent crimes motivated by discrimination based on race, religion, color, sex, sexual identity, or sexuality, among other protected bases.

“LGBTQ+ rights are human rights,” said Schleifer. “We must ensure that everyone in Rockland and Westchester Counties can live without fear of being persecuted simply because of who they are and whom they love. In Congress, I will work every day to protect the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. The LGBTQ+ community needs federal civil rights protection written into federal statutory law.”

“It is noteworthy and moving that the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act equally protects members of both the LGBTQ+ community, as well as the victims of the anti-Semitic act of domestic terror perpetrated in a rabbi’s home in Monsey in December. That is because injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, a truth we must always keep in mind.”

Schleifer’s plan to promote the rights of LGBTQ+ Americans is based on values that have guided him throughout his life as a federal prosecutor, including equality, inclusion, and justice.  He is a fervent supporter of the Equality Act, which will ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in sectors like employment, housing, and credit. Today, half of LGBTQ+ people live in a state where it is legally permissible for an employer to fire, pass over for a promotion, or harass them without legal repercussions.  Schleifer’s support of the Equality Act would extend federal protections across all 50 states, including the 28 states that currently do not have any job protections for LGBTQ+ workers.

Schleifer would also foster a greater sense of inclusion and belonging among the LGBTQ+ community by directing greater resources towards research and services that support their wellbeing. Schleifer will also fight to ensure that everyone in 21st century America has access to quality, affordable healthcare, including supporting legislation for a public option to compete with private insurance plans and cover the 8.5% of Americans that have no existing coverage. Schleifer will also fight to force insurers to cover more services, including fertility services which are especially vital for same-sex couples looking to start their own biological families.

His plan also increases funding to curb bullying of LGBTQ+ students and serve runaway and homeless LGBTQ+ youth, who are 120 percent more likely to experience homelessness than their non-LGBTQ+ peers.  And finally, he’ll devote more research funding to the National Institute of Health to study HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment options, including current options like Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP). 

He will also call upon the president to lift the 2018 ban restricting transgender individuals from serving in the U.S. military.

Adam’s Plan for LGBTQ Equality, Inclusion, and Justice

Equality: Codify LGBTQ+ equality into law by passing the Equality Act.

Pass the National Equality Act so that Title VII protections under the Civil Rights Act extend to the LGBTQ+ community, including in employment, housing, credit, education, public spaces and services, federally funded programs, and jury service.

Inclusion. Direct greater resources towards research and services that support the well-being of LGBTQ+ individuals.

Increase the National Institute of Health funding for HIV/AIDS research and prevention measures, including access to PrEP.

Require health insurance companies to cover fertility services, so that members of the LGBTQ+ community have a meaningful and equal opportunity to reproduce and/or start families, and work to ease restrictions and barriers to adoption.

Increase access to funding and services for runaway and homeless youth.

Provide more federal funding to support local schools adopt codes of conduct prohibiting bullying on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Increase resources available for LGBTQ+ pride centers so they can continue their work protecting the community.

Justice. Outlaw harmful and antiquated practices that afflict LGBTQ+ people.

Ban the use of the gay-panic defense.

Enforce existing federal hate-crime laws, including the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act.

About Adam Schleifer:

Adam Schleifer, 38, graduated from Chappaqua’s public schools in 1999 and went on to attend Cornell University and Columbia University Law School, where he served as a Senior & Staff Development Editor on the Columbia Law Review. After graduating from law school, Schleifer served two years as a federal law clerk, first in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, and then in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Schleifer then built a career at one of the nation’s leading law firms before reentering public service, first as a New York State consumer-protection regulator, and then as an Assistant United States Attorney. Schleifer has prosecuted regulatory and federal-criminal actions against predatory payday and subprime auto lenders; taken dangerous and illegal weapons out of communities; prosecuted crimes of sexual violence and predation; and protected our clean air by prosecuting a conspiracy to violate the Clean Air Act. Adam Schleifer and his wife, Nicole, are residents of New Castle.

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