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By A. Edward Hardin, Jr.

Federal statutes such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act extend protections to employees based on traits such as race, religion, national origin, sex, age, and pregnancy.   Louisiana has similar protections under state law; however, sexual orientation is not a protected trait under either federal or Louisiana employment law (although some states, and even some municipalities in Louisiana, have extended employment-based protections based on sexual orientation).

On May 20, a Louisiana Senate Committee considered a bill that would have made sweeping changes to a number of state statutes that would have extended certain protections based on sexual orientation.  The bill was voted down by a vote of 4-1 and was likely the last bill in the 2014 legislative session that would have extended rights based on sexual orientation.