So what does that mean to me? What can we expect of President Biden in his first months in the White House?
Quite a lot. He knows what he needs to do.
First, he needs to undo the presidential decrees enacted by Trump. So what comes after that? Here is a partial list of a few of the most important promises made by President-elect Joe Biden.
Biden will also structure his Administration to ensure women’s issues remain at the forefront of policy efforts.
Biden knows that addressing the challenges faced by women and girls is more than just a campaign promise — it’s imperative if the Administration is going to succeed in its broader efforts to make sure the government and economy work for all Americans. Biden will ensure that his administration aggressively protects the rights and addresses the unique needs of all women, including Black women, Latina women, Native women, Asian American and Pacific Islander women, women with disabilities, and lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer women.
- Reaffirm that the Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
In 2014, the Obama-Biden Department of Justice affirmed that the Civil Rights Act’s Title VII prohibition against employment discrimination based on sex applies to discrimination based on gender identity. The EEOC later affirmed that Title VII prohibits discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. The Trump-Pence Administration’s Department of Justice has reversed this position, arguing that Title VII excludes protections for these groups. Biden will ensure enforcement of Title VII and work to pass the Equality Act to affirm that employment discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation is prohibited.
- Support transgender and non-binary people in the workforce.
Transgender and non-binary Americans face significant discrimination when seeking employment. To address these unique challenges, Biden will ensure that workforce and entrepreneurial training programs and resources funded by the U.S. Department of Labor and the Small Business Administration focus on and benefit this community. He will also provide incentives for states and local governments to adopt programs that help prepare transgender and non-binary people for the workforce and encourage entrepreneurship.
- Stop employment discrimination in the federal government.
The federal government should lead by example. Biden will restore full implementation of President Obama’s executive order prohibiting discrimination by federal contractors, which Trump has undermined. The Biden Administration will also work with civil rights leaders to develop and institute implicit bias training programs for federal workers and contractors to address discrimination based on race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or disability. A Biden Administration will make the resulting training materials available to the public so other employers can conduct similar programs.
Treat LGBTQ+ service members and veterans with the respect that they deserve.
- Reverse the transgender military ban.
In 2010, Biden played a leading role in the Obama-Biden Administration’s repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to allow gay, lesbian, and bisexual service members to serve the country they love without hiding their sexual orientation. In June 2016, the Obama-Biden Administration overturned the ban on transgender individuals serving openly, without hiding their gender identity. But Trump reversed this policy, barring transgender patriots from serving openly. This is discriminatory and detrimental to our national security. Every American who is qualified to serve in our military should be able to do so—regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity and without having to hide who they are. Biden will direct the U.S. Department of Defense to allow transgender service members to serve openly, receive needed medical treatment, and be free from discrimination.