JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. —The Missouri Nondiscrimination Act (MONA) has been filed once again, making this the 22nd year MONA has been filed in a row. As legislative pre-filing began today, Representative Greg Razer (D-25-Kansas City) took the opportunity to help protect LGBTQ Missourians from discrimination.

 

MONA would add sexual orientation and gender identity to Missouri’s Human Rights Statute, which currently prohibits discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations for other protected categories, including race, sex, and national origin. According to the Williams Institute, more than 160,000 LGBTQ adults in Missouri would benefit from an expanded state nondiscrimination law that includes sexual orientation and gender identity.

 

“Missouri will enter the year 2020 with laws still in place allowing for the legal discrimination of its LGBTQ citizens," said Razer. "It is beyond time for our state to finally step up and protect all Missourians. With growing support from both sides of the aisle, it’s time for leadership in Jefferson CIty to care enough to act.” 

 

Rep. Razer’s bill (HB 1527) is the first version of this bill filed. Rep. Tom Hannegan (R - 65-St. Charles) is expected to file a similar version later this month. Both represent the Missouri LGBT caucus and draw attention to this bipartisan issue.  Last year, for the second year in a row, MONA had a hearing in the House General Laws Committee, featuring favorable, compelling testimony, paving a huge step forward for this bill, which hasn’t passed out of a full chamber vote since 2013. 

 

“In a year where protections for LGBTQ people will be debated by candidates all across the country, it is ever more important for this critical legislation to be filed," added Steph Perkins, PROMO’s Executive Director. "This year, PROMO will again be in the Capitol every single day, working with legislators to create an environment where elected officials on both sides of the aisle are ready to vote YES on the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act.” 

 

The Missouri Nondiscrimination Act was first introduced by former Rep. Steve McLuckie (D-44-Kansas City) in 1998.

 

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