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At the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), our mission is promoting and protecting opportunity. Secretary Thomas E. Perez believes that the nation and the workforce are strongest when we embrace diversity, and when workers can apply their unique skills and talents to jobs that provide fair wages, benefits, and working conditions, and ensure respectful inclusion. For decades, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender workers have fought for that same opportunity. At this moment in time, we see exciting progress toward ending discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and reminders that the struggle remains unfinished. We applaud the many employers who recognize that workplace equality is not just the right thing to do – it is also good for business. Employers can do well while also doing good. At the same time, too many workers and their families still encounter legal, economic, and cultural barriers to full participation in the American dream.

Given this reality, we seek to be the “Department of Opportunity” for LGBT workers. Under President Obama’s leadership, we have assessed how every aspect of our day-to-day work can incorporate concrete actions to advance LGBT workplace equality. From our worker-protection agencies and regulations, to our grants and technical assistance programs, to our own responsibilities as an employer, we have taken actions large and small to ensure LGBT workers and their families can share in the benefits of a growing economy.


Suggested Citation
U.S. Department of Labor. (2016). Advancing LGBT workplace rights. Washington, DC: Author.