HCPC Supports HB161

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Spring Hill — The Hernando County Progressive Caucus believes that employers should not be able to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The following letter in support of HB 161 was sent to Hernando Representatives Ingoglia & Massullo, Rep. Rommel (Civil Justice Subcommittee Chair), Rep. Fitzenhagen (Business and Professions Subcommittee Chair), and Rep. Renner (Judiciary Committee Chair).

As members of the Hernando County Progressive Caucus we, the undersigned, urge your support in the passing of HB 161, prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is a human right. Everyone deserves to be treated with basic human decency and to feel safe navigating their everyday lives. These protections are also good for business. A 2015 Thinkspot Inc. study, commissioned by Equality Means Business, reported that Florida loses over $360 million annually due to turnover and lost productivity caused by LGBTQ+ discrimination in the workplace. Passing this bill will:

  • establish inclusive legal expectations for lodging establishments, when 1 in 10 employed residents of Hernando County work in Accommodations & Food Service
  • implement inclusive legal expectations for food service establishments, as Food Preparers, Cooks, and Servers are occupations gaining the most new jobs in Pasco and Hernando counties
  • prevent discrimination within the workplace to attract and retain talent among the 800,000 Floridians who identify as LGBTQ+
  • allow Florida’s businesses to appeal to more visitors from around the country and the world who may be considering Florida as their next tourist destination

If you would like any further information from our organization, please feel free to contact our Public Policy Chair, Sue Foster, at publicpolicy@hcpcfl.org.