In 2011, then-newly elected Ohio Governor John Kasich removed gender identity from Ohio’s state employment anti-discrimination policy. 8 years later, he is adding it back before he leaves office.
The executive order protects state employees and job applicants from being discriminated against on the basis of gender identity or expression. The mandate was originally added by former Democratic Governor Ted Strickland in 2007. “Upon a recent review of the policy, the governor felt it should better include groups vulnerable to potential discrimination,” Kasich Spokesperson John Keeling said in a statement.
While a step in the right direction, its days already seem numbered as Kasich’s Republican predecessor, Governor-Elect Mike DeWine, has said he opposes non-discrimination laws that protect sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. This is not a new stance for DeWine either, who has a long track record of anti-lgbt actions dating back to the mid-1990’s.