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Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty

Representing the 5th District of Connecticut



Equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans is deeply personal for me. I gave a gay rights speech when I was just 15 years old, and I’ve been a strong advocate ever since. It was truly an honor to welcome my brother’s husband into our family a few years ago. One of my proudest moments in the state legislature was voting for marriage equality.

Throughout my career – as a Supreme Court lawyer working on AIDS policies in the 1990s, later as a PTA mom and town councilmember, and now as a member of Congress – I have always worked hard to model and support love and respect for all people. I was honored to be the keynote speaker at the 2013 PFLAG National Convention, especially because my mother, Mitzi Henderson, is a past president of PFLAG.

The Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges has made marriage equality the law of the land in all 50 states. This was an incredible victory in the movement for full equality, but there is still a great deal of work left to do to ensure that no American is fired from their job, denied an education, or evicted from their home simply because of who they are or whom they love. 

I am a coauthor of the Social Security and Marriage Equality (SAME) Act. My bill would ensure that all couples — regardless of who they love or where they live — receive the Social Security benefits they‘ve earned after lifetimes of hard work.

I’m currently fighting to pass the Equality Act – a historic civil rights bill to end discrimination against LGBT individuals in education, employment, housing, public accommodations, public accommodations, and other core areas of life. This legislation would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to make it illegal to discriminate against someone based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

I remain committed to the continued fight for full equality under the law.
For more information concerning my work and views on LGBT equality, please contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.

Rep. Elizabeth Esty Speaks on House Floor in Honor of LGBT Pride Month

More on Equality

November 27, 2018 Press Release

A Senate amendment to Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty’s (CT-05) bipartisan Women in Aerospace Education Act (H.R. 4254) passed the U.S. House of Representatives by voice vote earlier this afternoon. The Women in Aerospace Education Act first passed the House in December 2017 by a vote of 409 to 17, was amended and passed the Senate by unanimous consent in late September, 2018. The Women in Aerospace Education Act now awaits President Donald Trump’s signature.

October 12, 2018 Press Release
Today, Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) introduced H.Res.1121, a resolution remembering Matthew Shepard and affirming Congress’ support for the LGBTQIA+ community and opposition to hate crimes. October 12, 2018 is the 20th anniversary of the death of Matthew Shepard, a 21-year-old student at the University of Wyoming, who on October 7, 1998, was brutally attacked and tied to a fence in a field outside of Laramie, Wyoming and left to die. He succumbed to his injuries on October 12, 1998. Esty introduced the resolution with a bipartisan group of more than 80 cosponsors, including Rep. Rosa DeLauro (CT-3), Rep. John Larson (CT-1), Rep. Joe Courtney (CT-2), and Rep. Jim Himes (CT-4).
July 26, 2018 Press Release
Today, Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) introduced a resolution that would recognize the need to improve physical access to a number of federally-funded facilities to all people, especially those with disabilities. Esty introduced the measure with Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-3), Congressman John Larson (CT-1), Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-2), and Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4). Congressman Donald Payne, Jr. (NJ-10) and Congressman Jim Langevin (RI-2) also co-sponsored the resolution.
June 28, 2018 Press Release
Today, Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) hailed the House passage of H.R. 6157, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. The bill, which cleared the House by a vote of 359-49, also included Esty’s amendment to appropriate an additional $2 million to be used to increase funding for the Department of Defense (DOD) Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office for sexual assault prevention and response programs.
June 26, 2018 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) released the following statement in reaction to the Supreme Court of the United States ruling in a 5-4 decision to uphold President Trump’s ban on immigrants from Muslim countries, arguing it was permissible under the law:
June 20, 2018 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) released the following statement in reaction to President Trump’s Executive Order regarding his decision to stop separating children from their parents at the United States border:
June 20, 2018 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) sent a letter to the Honorable Peter O’Rourke, the Acting Secretary of the VA, late last week raising her concerns in regards to the March 2018 Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) research brief highlighting the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The letter comes days after reports indicated that the VA is ranked second or third among the worst federal agencies for harassment in the executive branch.
June 15, 2018 Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.–Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) released the following statement to express her growing concerns over the Trump Administration’s immigration policies—specifically, the Department of Homeland Security’s decision to separate children from their parents at the United States border:

June 8, 2018 Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.–Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) released the following statement after the House of Representatives voted last night to pass her amendment to the Mini-Bus, which would allocate an additional $500,000 in funding and resources to the Office of Employee Assistance (OEA). OEA is primarily responsible for assisting employees whose job performance may be negatively affected by personal and professional problems. The amendment passed by voice vote. 

May 9, 2018 Press Release
Last week, the Connecticut Congressional Delegation sent a letter to United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar expressing their opposition to the Trump administration’s proposed changes to the Title X program, which ensures that people have access to reproductive healthcare. The Trump administration’s planned “domestic gag rule” would ban any healthcare provider from receiving Title X funding if they even talk about abortion or abortion-related services with their patients. Beyond banning counseling and referrals, the gag rule would also impose additional requirements that would essentially prohibit providers that perform abortions—like Planned Parenthood—from participating in the Title X program.