news

Trump administration waters down LGBT employment protection rights in trade deal with Canada and Mexico

The new wording says the US is 'sufficient to fulfil the obligations' on labour rights

2018-12-04

The Trump administration has watered down LGBT employment protection rights in new trade deal with Canada and Mexico.

Donald Trump, Justin Trudeau and Mexico’s Enrique Pena Nieto met together at the G20 summit at the end of November to finalise a trade deal.

In the original text of the agreement, it pledged that all three countries must support “policies that protect workers against employment discrimination on the basis of sex, including with regard to pregnancy, sexual harassment, sexual orientation, gender identity.”

However, globalnews.ca report that the final agreement has changed the language and many believe it has been watered down.

The new wording says each country should implement policies which “considers appropriate to protect workers against employment discrimination on the basis of sex.”

However, a footnote says American federal hiring policies ‘are sufficient to fulfil the obligations’ on labour rights and therefore ‘requires no additional action’ from the US.

The new wording has come underfire from LGBT activists with president and CEO of GLAAD Sarah Kate Ellis writing on Twitter: “Though the new USMCA trade deal includes protections for LGBTQ workers, they’re effectively nullified by a footnote.

"Once again @realDonaldTrump caves to anti-LGBTQ activists and squanders the United States’ status as a leader in LGBTQ equality.”