SC Equality tirelessly lobbies the South Carolina General Assembly and mobilizes our communities to promote legislation on issues that matter most to you, including marriage equality, parental rights, inclusive anti-bullying policies, employment discrimination, hate violence, privacy rights, sexuality education, adoption, domestic partnerships, and HIV/AIDS.
As bills are being filed for the 2018 General Assembly session, check back often to learn what SC Equality is supporting and opposing.
To view current legislation that SC Equality is supporting and opposing, click the “Learn More” button.
2018 Legislative Action Center
AT THE STATE HOUSE
With your support in 2017, SC Equality defeated all anti-LGBT bills at the South Carolina Statehouse (for the 3rd year in a row). In 2018, we are promoting bills protecting LGBT South Carolinians in employment and housing, anti-bullying, hate crimes, adoption and HIV prevention. We can capitalize on past successes, not only ensuring the defeat of any law that discriminates against LGBT South Carolinians but also demand the South Carolina General Assembly pass bills into law that protect every citizen in South Carolina no matter who you love.
Our work at the Statehouse is the backbone of who we are as an organization and a movement. It would not be possible without the dedicated staff and lobbyist we have working everyday to lobby legislators on your behave.
LITIGATION TASK FORCE
The Litigation Task Force was formed in 2014 and originally known as the Post-DOMA Litigation Task Force. It’s mission was to determine what legal steps to take to win marriage equality in South Carolina.
Comprised of some of the best and brightest legal minds in our state, this volunteer Task Force looked at every aspect of the Supreme Court ruling, our state’s laws, and the federal and state court systems – everything it takes to build a case for marriage equality. Advice from this Task Force, whose members participate on a pro bono basis, was based on an extensive review of case history and legal expertise, with emphasis on the specifics of the South Carolina judicial system needed to win any case that comes before us.
REGISTER TO VOTE
115,000 Voices for Equality
The gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community in South Carolina has become a defining feature of our state’s political landscape. More and more candidates are recognizing that the LGBT community is an engaged and united electorate that supports and empowers our leader’s who embrace equality.
Since our founding in 2002, SC Equality has identified nearly 115,000 same-sex and pro-LGBT voter households in South Carolina.
Each cycle the SC Equality PAC (political action committee) and SC Equality Coalition (501(c)1) surveys candidates in local, state and national elections about issues and policies that our members care about. In 2018, we will transform the survey data into comprehensive 2018 voter guide that showcase candidate positions on critical issues like local non-discrimination policies, anti-bullying policies, adoption by gay parents and marriage equality.
Despite the significant progress our community has made, there is still no statewide law that prohibits discrimination against LGBTQ people in South Carolina. This means that, according to state law, it is legal to fire someone, evict them from housing, or deny them service at a restaurant just because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ). While it is illegal to discriminate in employment, housing and public accommodations based race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, national origin, age, handicap or marital status, the LGBTQ community is currently left out of statewide non-discrimination protections.
If you have experienced discrimination, we want to hear from you.
With the failure of South Carolina having statewide laws protecting LGBTQ South Carolinians, many local municipalities have taken an additional step to demonstrate ways their communities can—and do—support the LGBTQ people who live and work there, even where states and the federal government have failed to do so.
The Municipal Equality Index (MEI) examines how inclusive municipal laws, policies, and services are of LGBTQ people who live and work there. Cities are rated based on non-discrimination laws, the municipality as an employer, municipal services, law enforcement and the city leadership’s public position on equality.
SC Equality’s 2018 strategy is to encourage more cities/counties across the state to take up this important issue and to pass local ordinances protecting citizens in their area.
RECENT ACTION ALERTS
SC Equality monitors legislation and policy affecting LGBT South Carolinians year-round. We will keep you informed on breaking news and let you know when your legislators need to hear from you. Whether it is sending an email, making a phone call, or meeting face-to-face, direct communication with your elected officials is critical to winning equality in our home state.
Action Alerts are often critical and very time sensitive (ie. a bill is about to be voted on) – the best way to stay up-to-date on actions you can take to win equality in South Carolina is to Sign Up for Receive E-mails from us. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter to receive breaking news on what’s going on and how you can get involved.