January 29, 2020 at 9:32 pm EST | by Philip Van Slooten
Va. Senate committee approves nondiscrimination bill
Virginia, gay news, Washington Blade
The Virginia State Capitol (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

The Virginia Senate General Laws and Technology Committee on Wednesday approved the Virginia Values Act, a bill that would add sexual orientation and gender identity to Virginia’s nondiscrimination law.

“With 12 votes, in bipartisan fashion, and a line of supporters including workers, doctors, realtors, NAACP members, mothers, business owners and long time advocates, my bill to comprehensively ban discrimination against LGBT Virginians passes out of committee,” proclaimed state Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-Alexandria) in a tweet.

This milestone for LGBTQ protections in Virginia was swiftly noted by other supporters.

“This day was a long time coming,” tweeted the LGBTQ Victory Fund. “Thank you, Senator Ebbin, for everything you’ve done to protect LGBTQ Virginians.”

Equality Virginia and the recently formed Virginia Values Coalition were also essential in garnering support for this critical legislation; noting that Virginia is one of 30 states without laws protecting LGBTQ individuals from discrimination in employment, housing and places of public accommodation. Advocates say Ebbin’s dedication has been key to bringing the Virginia Values Act closer to becoming law.

“Thank you for your leadership,” tweeted Human Rights Campaign President Alphonso David. “Because of your work, we are one step closer to ensuring Virginians are protected from discrimination.”

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