This sexual harassment policy in the Arizona legislature follows the denunciation of Rep. Michelle Ugenti-Rita who said she has been sexually harassed by male lawmakers.
The policy includes a part to combat discrimination at work. There are protections based on race, age, national origin, religion, sex, disability or veteran status. But there are no protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity to protect LGBT legislators and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees in the legislature.
Mesnard said he didn't want to divert the discussion and focus on sexual harassment. So why foresee a section on "employment discrimination in the House of Representatives"? And to omit LGBT people?
In Arizona, there is protection that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, but only for state workers. It does not apply to legislators and their employees.
The LGBT caucus will try to put pressure to change the policy. This one was created within the Arizona legislature to make sure that all Arizonans are treated equally and fairly.
This new policy against sexual harassment and discrimination is a good initiative. But it's perverse to use a measure that must protect women to disguise discrimination against LGBT people. Let's hope that the LGBT caucus' attempt to achieve equality will succeed.