Via press release:
A new rule prohibiting discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity in the federal contracting workforce is being announced today by the U.S. Department of Labor. The rule implements Executive Order 13672, which was signed by President Obama on July 21.The press release notes that today's action becomes effective 120 days after being formally entered into the Federal Register and will apply to all "new and modified" civilian contracts with the federal government from that date forward.
"Americans believe in fairness and opportunity. No one should live in fear of being fired or passed over or discriminated against at work simply because of who they are or who they love," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez. "Laws prohibiting workplace discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity are long overdue, and we're taking a big step forward today to fix that."
EO 13672 tasked the department with updating the rules implementing EO 11246 to add gender identity and sexual orientation to the classes it protects. While 18 states, the District of Columbia and many businesses, large and small, already offer workplace protections to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees, July's executive order was the first federal action to ensure LGBT workplace equality in the private sector.