NGLCC Encouraged By Leadership in President Obama’s State of the Union Address

| By
The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) is encouraged by President Obama’s call for the House to vote on The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) in last night’s State of the Union address. We applaud President Obama for continuing to put the emphasis on the people and ensuring "Americans feel secure in their jobs, homes and budgets." At NGLCC, we know that abolishing discrimination against employees based on sexual orientation and gender identity will catapult us into a 21st century American workplace. 
Employees who are authentic at work as well as at home can contribute more of themselves to the fabric of our nation. In addition to calling for increased equality for women and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) workers in the workplace, President Obama continues to show that our cultural context is important to our continued economic growth. We are optimistic real immigration reform can happen this year, yet we call on the President and the Congress to ensure bi-national, same-sex couples are a part of any final reforms signed into law.
President Obama’s focus on nuts and bolts solutions to spur economic growth, particularly pushing apprenticeship programs, establishing the “myRA” savings program, and balancing our energy efficiency efforts, will have a long-term effect on our economy. 
As NGLCC prepares for our second U.S. Department of Commerce-certified trade mission to Mexico in March, we support the President's call for breaking down barriers to new markets for American exports. This will help ensure LGBT-owned businesses and other small and medium size enterprises have access to the 95 percent of the world's consumers that live outside the U.S.
Moreover, we applaud the president’s commitment to investing in thought leadership. Whether through manufacturing institutes or convening Fortune 500 CEOs and advocacy organization leaders, we must continue to stoke the creative, innovative, and inspirational American spirit that is the engine of our economy.