Whirlpool is among 10 major companies in Michigan pushing state lawmakers to make changes to the Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act to include sexual orientation and gender identity. The companies have formed the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition to lobby the Legislature. It's illegal in Michigan to subject people to different treatment in the state based on religion, race, color, national origin, age, gender, height, weight, family status or marital status. Sexual orientation and gender identity aren't included in the law, meaning jobs can be lost and housing can be denied to someone just for being gay. The founding members of the MCWC include Whirlpool, Google, AT&T, Dow Chemical, Consumers Energy and Herman Miller. The coalition notes new research shows an overwhelming majority of Michigan residents support updating the civil rights law. Many communities across the state have already acted to update their civil rights ordinances regarding this issue. In addition, surveys of small business owners show that a strong majority support striking this important balance.
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