North American Trade Agreement could Benefit LGBTQ Community

The new North American trade agreement, among the United States, Canada, and Mexico, could benefit the LGBTQ community, reported Politico.

The agreement contains a requirement that the member countries take steps to protect workers against sex discrimination (which includes sexual orientation and gender identity).

If the provision is not removed before the agreement is signed, it will be a victory for Canada. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wanted an entire chapter dedicated to gender equality as part of his “progressive” trade agenda.

The draft agreement didn’t include that chapter, but Canada “succeeded at getting gender discrimination, more broadly, included in the deal,” according to a Canadian official. “We viewed it as important to get gender identity included in the agreement… it’s a win for us.”

The Canadian official said the inclusion of this provision could have real-world consequences, but both Canada and the U.S. agree it wouldn’t require a new law.

“The draft provision would require no changes to U.S. law,” said Jeffrey Emerson, a U.S. Trade Representative spokesman.

The final agreement will be signed on November 30. Until then, the provision could possibly be changed.