Press Release
For Immediate Release: 
June 23, 2022
Contact Info: 
Raymond Rodriguez 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the House Floor this afternoon in support of H.R. 4176, the LGBTQI+ Data Inclusion Act. Below is a copy of his remarks as prepared for delivery and a link to the video:
 
Click here for a link to the video.

“The story of the LGBTQ community in the United States has largely been defined by its struggle to gain visibility and recognition from the government, private and public institutions, and their fellow Americans. That struggle led Marsha P. Johnson – a black transgender woman – to help lead the vanguard at the Stonewall Inn in 1969. That struggle led Harvey Milk to stand up and ultimately give his life for his community’s visibility and civic participation. That struggle led courageous legislators like Barney Frank, Tammy Baldwin, and others to run for Congress without hiding their true selves. And that struggle led House Democrats to bring an end to ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ in 2011 – an effort I’m very proud to have helped lead – and pass the Equality Act.

“This Pride Month, we celebrate all the progress we have made over the years to help LGBTQ Americans express themselves more openly and to help their community become more visible. We must acknowledge, however, that the federal government does not do enough to ensure that the LGBTQ community is seen and considered when making key policy decisions. Although there is evidence that LGBTQ Americans – especially transgender people – still face substantial prejudice in areas such as housing, employment, and education, we need more data to determine the scope of these challenges and to devise policy solutions that work for all. We must make sure that LGBTQ Americans do not go unseen.

“That’s why I’m excited to bring the LGBTQI+ Data Inclusion Act to the Floor today. To promote visibility, foster inclusion, and build equity and equality for LGBTQ Americans, this legislation would require federal agencies to collect voluntary information on sexual orientation and gender identity whenever they ask for other demographic data. I want to emphasize that, although all of this data will be processed anonymously, submission of this information will always be completely voluntary. Americans should never be forced to disclose their sexual orientation or gender identity to the government.

“I want to thank Rep. Grijalva for introducing this legislation as well as Chairwoman Maloney and her colleagues on the Oversight and Reform Committee for their efforts to advance this bill. Although we still have much to do to address the disparities and marginalization that LGBTQ people face in America, this bill will help equip policymakers with the tools and information needed to make further progress. Our vote today is a continuation of the efforts of Johnson, Milk, all the members of the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus, and numerous other LGBTQ Americans who have fought for visibility over the years. Let us help advance that fight for visibility today by passing this legislation. Vote ‘yes.’”