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Wayne D. Fontana

LGBT anti-discrimination bill advances in state Senate

Legislation to prohibit discrimination in employment and housing based on sexual orientation or gender identity cleared a first hurdle Wednesday in the Pennsylvania Senate.

The Urban Affairs and Housing Committee vote marked the furthest such anti-discrimination legislation has advanced in the Republican-controlled chamber. The bill has broad support from the business community and liberal lawmakers, but is opposed by social conservatives.

Ted Martin, the executive director of the Harrisburg-based Equality Pennsylvania, which advocates for gay and transgender rights, called the vote "an incredible step in the right direction."

It passed, 7-4, after a brief...

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