There probably wasn’t a love-fest to begin with, but Equality Florida wasted no time taking newly minted Gov. Ron DeSantis for failing to include LGBTQ protections in anti-discrimination executive order issued yesterday.
On the day he was sworn in, DeSantis signed two executive orders, including one which, according to a press release issued by the governor’s office, “reaffirms the policy of non-discrimination in government employment” established in orders signed by former Gov. Rick Scott in 2011 and former Gov. Jeb Bush in 1999.
“It shall be the policy of my administration to prohibit discrimination in employment based on age, sex, race, color, religion, national origin, marital status, or disability, and to ensure equal opportunity for all individuals currently employed in, and individuals seeking employment in my administration,” the executive order reads.
But the order doesn’t mention LGBTQ workers, something that drew the wrath of Equality Florida Senior political director Joe Saunders, a former state representative who was one of the state’s first openly gay legislators.
“Equality Florida is deeply disappointed to see that LGBTQ employees and contractors have been left out of the Governor’s executive order,” Saunders said in a press release.
“It’s hard to believe that Governor DeSantis and his staff are not aware of the LGBTQ communities call for these protections following the Pulse tragedy and therefore it is hard to interpret this as anything less than a purposeful omission. As Governors across the country establish these critical protections for LGBTQ families, this order draws a stark contrast. We look forward to a dialogue with Governor DeSantis about why LGBTQ employees have been omitted from this critical policy and how he plans to make sure that all Floridians, regardless of who they are or who they love, can be protected from discrimination.”