On Aug. 20, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker signed several measuresincluding HB 252which strengthens the Illinois Human Rights Act to protect employees against discrimination in the workplace, no matter the size of the employer.
"Thank you, Gov. Pritzker, for signing House Bill 252 and sending the powerful and unmistakable message that Illinois is strongest when state law protects all workers from discrimination," said Equality Illinois Director of Public Policy Michael Ziri in a statement. "For the LGBTQ community, the governor's action today comes at a critical time.
"At the federal level, the U.S. Supreme Court, on [Oct.] 8, will consider whether federal civil rights law protects LGBTQ people from employment discrimination. And just a few days ago, the Trump Administration proposed a broad policy that would allow federal contractors to discriminate against LGBTQ people, women, and religious minorities. But Illinois is moving forward, and our Human Rights Act is strengthened, thanks to the governor's action."
With state Rep. Will Guzzard (D-Chicago) and state Sen. Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) as sponsors and initiated by the Laborers International Union Midwest Region, HB 252 applies the Illinois Human Rights Act's employment non-discrimination protections to employers with one or more employees. Previously, the state law only applied to employers with 15 or more workers.