Around the Region: Wis. businesses push for trans-inclusive nondiscrimination laws

From The Column:

A new group has formed in Wisconsin with the goal of passing transgender-specific nondiscrimination laws, the Wisconsin Gazette reports:

The Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce and Fair Wisconsin announced the formation of Wisconsin Businesses for Equality, a coalition committed to updating Wisconsin’s non-discrimination law to protect the transgender community. Founding members include Froedtert Health, Kohler Co., ManpowerGroup, Milwaukee Bucks and UW Health.
“We believe it’s time to update and modernize our state laws to add nondiscrimination protections based on gender identity and expression,” said Jason Rae, president and CEO of the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce.
“We must embrace diversity by enabling all individuals to cultivate their skillsets and develop successful, sustainable careers,” said Becky Frankiewicz, president of ManpowerGroup North America. “A strong and thriving business community means empowering people to participate in the workplace. ManpowerGroup is honored to actively support the Wisconsin Businesses for Equality campaign. Together, we can put people to work and truly create positive change throughout our community.”

A new poll shows that the majority of Wisconsinites oppose discrimination against LGBTQ people, the Gazette reported:

A new, first of its kind poll commissioned by the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce and conducted by Public Policy Polling shows that a strong majority of Wisconsinites are opposed to discrimination among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals in Wisconsin.
In the survey, conducted earlier this month, 62 percent of Wisconsinites believe that discrimination against transgender individuals is wrong and should be illegal.
“People in Wisconsin believe that everyone should be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity” said Jason Rae, president and CEO of the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

The survey also found that 63 percent of people believe Wisconsin’s non-discrimination laws should be updated to protect transgender individuals.

Milwaukee Business Journal: Rockwell, 60 other companies join new coalition supporting transgender rights

Rockwell Automation is the latest major Milwaukee-area business to show its support for a state Legislature bill that would protect transgender people from workplace discrimination, according to a news release.

Last week, the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce announced Wisconsin Businesses for Equality, a collaboration of local businesses supporting the law, including the Milwaukee Bucks, Froedtert Health, ManpowerGroup and Kohler Co. Now, the chamber announced that Rockwell had joined the effort.

"Rockwell Automation is proud to support Wisconsin Businesses For Equality because we believe this will help attract the best talent to this state and positively impact the social and economic health of the region,” said Ed Seaberg, Rockwell's vice president of information technology. “Inclusiveness and diversity leads to innovation and better decision-making, and people want to live and work where they feel like they fit in.” 

Wisconsin became the first state in the nation to protect lesbian, gay and bisexual people from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations in 1982, but that protection does not yet extend to various gender identities and expressions. The Privacy Protection and Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act has been introduced in the state Legislature and would add the gender identity protection to the nondiscrimination law.

Rockwell is one of more than 60 companies to have joined the coalition in the last week, including Associated Bank.

“These businesses understand the importance of supporting their diverse workforce, as well as the need to be a community that is welcoming and inclusive of all people,” said Megin McDonell, executive director of Fair Wisconsin. “We are thrilled to see so many businesses signing up and supporting equality.” 

LGBT chamber president and CEO Jason Rae expressed his gratitude to the businesses that recently joined the coalition. Businesses wishing to join can do so at http://www.wibusinessesforequality.com/sign-the-pledge/.

See more: https://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/news/2017/12/07/rockwell-60-other-companies-join-new-coalition.html

Release: More than 60 businesses sign up to support pro-equality legislation

Rockwell Automation newest corporation to show support

MILWAUKEE — More than 60 businesses from around the state have signed up since the launch of Wisconsin Businesses for Equality to show their support for updating Wisconsin’s non-discrimination law to protect the transgender community, with Rockwell Automation being the newest corporation to sign on.

“Rockwell Automation is proud to support Wisconsin Businesses For Equality because we believe this will help attract the best talent to this state and positively impact the social and economic health of the region,” states Ed Seaberg, vice president, Information Technology, Rockwell Automation. “Inclusiveness and diversity leads to innovation and better decision-making – and people want to live and work where they feel like they fit in.”

Rockwell Automation joins other corporations including Froedtert Health, Kohler Co., ManpowerGroup, Milwaukee Bucks and UW Health, who have previously signed up to show they believe now is the time to add non-discrimination protections for gender identity and expression statewide.

“We are so thankful for the support of all the corporations, like Rockwell Automation, and other businesses that have stepped up to show their support for updating our state’s non-discrimination laws,” said Jason Rae, President & CEO of the Wisconsin LGBT Chamebr of Commerce.

“These businesses understand the importance of supporting their diverse workforce, as well as the need to be a community that is welcoming and inclusive of all people,” said Megin McDonell, Executive Director of Fair Wisconsin. “We are thrilled to see so many businesses signing up and supporting equality.”

Additional businesses and organization that have signed on to show their support for modernizing Wisconsin’s non-discrimination law include:

414 Photography, Inc
8 Branches Chinese Medicine
Accurate Web Solution, LLC
ACLU of Wisconsin
Alliance for Strong Families and Communities
American United Transportation Group
Amy Sherman-Kortbein Realtor
ArtWorks for Milwaukee
Associated Bank
B2B Dynamix LLC
Bay View Printing Co
Bay View United Methodist Church
Bounce Milwaukee
Brush & Canvas 2 U
Center for Community Healing, LLC
CommitChange
Coqui Paperie & Gifts
Coughlin Consulting
Cowboy David's Bake Shoppe
Cruise Planners
Diverse & Resilient
Eagle Centre House Bed and Breakfast
FlorenceCares, Inc
Fox Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
Fromagination
Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin & Brown LLP
Golden Antler Design
Goodwill Industries of North Central WI
GSAFE
Halling & Cayo. S.C.
HENRY STEINBERGER, PhD, LLC
Hunger Task Force
Imagine'at Photography, LLC
Janviere Photography
Jennifer Parker Therapy, Training, and Consultation
JMC Properties, Inc.
Kickapoo Valley Ranch Guest Cabins
KWG Counseling
Leaning Tree Naturals LLC
Loving Commitments Relationship Services
Lyle Husar Designs
Masters Ceremonies
Milwaukee Metropolitan Community Church
Molly Maid of East Metro Milwaukee
MOXIE Food+Drink
New Health Chiropractic & Integrated Healthcare
Nexus Consulting Group, Inc
North Shore Event Centre
Orphonic LLC
Pathfinders Milwaukee, Inc.
Peaceful Mind Massage LLC
Pickle Jar
Quest Home Loan Center
Radisson Hotel Milwaukee West
Rascals Bar & Grill
Salvatore’s Tomato Pies
Scott & Company Salon
Shepherd Express
Solace Acupuncture
Source 1 DJ Services
Sugar Doll
Telmark Sales Solutions Inc.
The River Food Pantry, Inc.
Touch of Pride Sales, LLC
Vital Image Wedding Studios
Vitality Health and Wellness

Businesses wishing to add their name to members of the coalition can do so at http://www.wibusinessesforequality.com/sign-the-pledge/.

Background:

In 1982, Wisconsin became the first state in the nation to protect lesbian, gay and bisexual people from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations. However, the law only protects individuals based on sexual orientation and not gender identity and expression.

A bill has been introduced in the Wisconsin State Legislature co-authored by Rep. Mark Spreitzer, Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa, and Sen. Tim Carpenter called The Privacy Protection and Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act. This bill adds gender identity and expression to the state’s 1982 non-discrimination law.

Wisconsin Businesses for Equality is a joint project of Fair Wisconsin and the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

Fair Wisconsin Inc. works to build a fair, safe, and inclusive Wisconsin for all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people by advancing, achieving, and protecting LGBT civil rights through lobbying, legislative advocacy, grassroots organizing, coalition building and electoral involvement. More information can be found online at: www.fairwisconsin.com.

The Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce is an organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and LGBT-allied businesses, corporations and professionals throughout the state of Wisconsin. It offers networking opportunities, business development efforts within the LGBT community, and educational programming to its members. The organization has more than 500 members from around the state. In 2015, the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce received the National Chamber of the Year Award from the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC). More information can be found online at: www.wislgbtchamber.com.

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Milwaukee Business Journal: Milwaukee Bucks, local corporations join LGBT chamber to back anti-discrimination law update

From the Milwaukee Business Journal:

Five prominent Milwaukee organizations have signed on as founders of Wisconsin Businesses for Equality, a coalition dedicated to updating Wisconsin's nondiscrimination law.

Partnering with the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce in Milwaukee and Madison LGBT rights advocacy group Fair Wisconsin, Froedtert Health, Kohler Co. ManpowerGroup, the Milwaukee Bucks and UW Health have founded the group to protect the transgender community in the workplace.

“We believe it’s time to update and modernize our state laws to add nondiscrimination protections based on gender identity and expression,” said Jason Rae, the chamber's president and CEO.

According to a news release, Wisconsin became the first state in the nation to protect lesbian, gay and bisexual people from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations in 1982. That protection doesn't yet extend to various gender identities and expressions, and according to an LGBT chamber poll, 63 percent of people in Wisconsin believe it should.

"We must embrace diversity by enabling all individuals to cultivate their skillsets and develop successful, sustainable careers,” said Becky Frankiewicz, president of ManpowerGroup North America. “A strong and thriving business community means empowering people to participate in the workplace."

The Privacy Protection and Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act, co-authored by Rep. Mark Spreitzer (D-Beloit), Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa (D-Milwaukee) and Sen. Tim Carpenter (D-Milwaukee), has been introduced in the state Legislature and would add the gender identity protection to the nondiscrimination law.

“Until the day that all transgender Wisconsinites are protected by law, we all stand to lose,” said Megin McDonell, executive director of Fair Wisconsin. “Businesses know that this isn’t just good for the bottom line, it is also the right thing to do.” 

“Wisconsin Businesses for Equality” launches to support transgender equality legislation

MILWAUKEE — The Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce and Fair Wisconsin proudly announced the formation of Wisconsin Businesses for Equality, a coalition committed to updating Wisconsin’s non-discrimination law to protect our transgender community. Founding members include Froedtert Health, Kohler Co., ManpowerGroup, Milwaukee Bucks and UW Health.

“We believe it’s time to update and modernize our state laws to add nondiscrimination protections based on gender identity and expression,” said Jason Rae, President & CEO of the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

"We must embrace diversity by enabling all individuals to cultivate their skillsets and develop successful, sustainable careers,” said Becky Frankiewicz, president of ManpowerGroup North America. “A strong and thriving business community means empowering people to participate in the workplace. ManpowerGroup is honored to actively support the Wisconsin Businesses for Equality Campaign. Together, we can put people to work and truly create positive change throughout our community.”

“Until the day that all transgender Wisconsinites are protected by law, we all stand to lose,” said Megin McDonell, Executive Director of Fair Wisconsin. “Businesses know that this isn’t just good for the bottom line, it is also the right thing to do.”

In 1982, Wisconsin became the first state in the nation to protect lesbian, gay and bisexual people from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations. However, the law only protects individuals based on sexual orientation and not gender identity and expression.

The Wisconsin LGBT Chamber recently commissioned a poll that found that 63% of people in Wisconsin believe the state’s non-discrimination laws should be updated to protect transgender individuals.

“Wisconsin Businesses for Equality will work to tell the story to the State Legislature about the need to update and modernize Wisconsin’s non-discrimination law to protect members of the transgender community,” said McDonell. “We hope that other businesses will join us in our effort as members of the coalition.”

“Working together, we can make sure Wisconsin is a competitive place to do business, but more importantly, that Wisconsin is a welcoming and inclusive place for all people – without regard to gender identity or expression,” added Rae.

A bill has been introduced in the Wisconsin State Legislature co-authored by Rep. Mark Spreitzer, Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa, and Sen. Tim Carpenter called The Privacy Protection and Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act. This bill adds gender identity and expression to the state’s 1982 non-discrimination law.

Businesses wishing to add their name to members of the coalition can do so at http://www.wibusinessesforequality.com/sign-the-pledge/.

Wisconsin Businesses for Equality is a joint project of Fair Wisconsin and the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

Fair Wisconsin Inc. works to build a fair, safe, and inclusive Wisconsin for all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people by advancing, achieving, and protecting LGBT civil rights through lobbying, legislative advocacy, grassroots organizing, coalition building and electoral involvement. More information can be found online at: www.fairwisconsin.com.

The Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce is an organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and LGBT-allied businesses, corporations and professionals throughout the state of Wisconsin. It offers networking opportunities, business development efforts within the LGBT community, and educational programming to its members. The organization has more than 500 members from around the state. In 2015, the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce received the National Chamber of the Year Award from the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC). More information can be found online at: www.wislgbtchamber.com.

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