• New District of Columbia Non-Discrimination Laws
  • March 24, 2015 | Authors: Meredith Merry Campbell; Joy C. Einstein; Gregory D. Grant; Michael L. Kabik
  • Law Firms: Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker, P.A. - Potomac Office ; Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker, P.A. - Washington Office
  • D.C.’s Mayor signed two new measures amending the D.C. Human Rights Act (“DCHRA”) to prohibit (1) discrimination by religiously-affiliated educational institutions on the basis of sexual orientation; and (2) workplace bias related to reproductive decisions.

    The first amendment to the DCHRA was made to do away with the previous Armstrong Amendment. The Armstrong Amendment was adopted in 1989 to protect church-affiliated schools from recognizing or funding school groups that promote, encourage, or condone any homosexual act, lifestyle, orientation, or belief if they were against a church’s tenets. This amendment would no longer allow the school to deny such recognition or funding.

    The second amendment to the DCHRA, the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act of 2014,would prohibit employers or employment agencies from discriminating against employees based on their reproductive health decisions, including any decision to use or access a particular drug, device or medical service. This would prohibit employers from terminating employees because of their use of birth control, because they have sought an abortion, or because they have undergone in vitro fertilization, among other things. The amendments will not become law until the expiration of a 30-day review period.