March 1, 2022

GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, is responding to President Joe Biden’s first State of the Union address, in which he urges the passage of the Equality Act, and calls the state laws targeting transgender Americans wrong.

President Biden said in his speech: ”For our LGBTQ+ Americans, let’s finally get the bipartisan Equality Act to my desk. The onslaught of state laws targeting transgender Americans and their families is simply wrong. As I said last year, especially to our younger transgender Americans, I’ll always have your back as your President, so you can be yourself and reach your God-given potential.”

The Equality Act, providing comprehensive protections against discrimination for every LGBTQ American as well as expanding protections for women, people of faith and people of color, passed the House one year ago; it has stalled in the deadlocked Senate.

195 state bills have been proposed in 2022, most (104) targeting transgender people and youth, with a surge of anti-LGBTQ school policy bills (77) that ban classroom conversation and books about LGBTQ people under the guise of “parents’ rights,” like Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Indiana’s legislature passed a bill today banning transgender girls in Kindergarten through 12th grade from school sports, one of 48 similar bills proposed this year. Texas’ governor and attorney general, on the eve of their primary elections tonight, released inaccurate, harmful guidance encouraging Texans to report parents who affirm and support their transgender and nonbinary children, against recommendations from leading medical associations.

GLAAD responses to the State of the Union via Twitter:

GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis responded on Twitter, and here:
“As state politicians target young transgender Americans and Texas Governor Greg Abbott dangerously threatens parents for caring for their own children, President Biden tonight shared a bold and unequivocal message of support for transgender people and all LGBTQ Americans. LGBTQ people are in every family and community, of every race, religion and in every region of the country. GLAAD research shows the LGBTQ community’s concerns are America’s concerns too, including how we rebuild from the COVID-19 pandemic and heal from the severe toll on our mental and physical health. President Biden has delivered on commitments to include LGBTQ citizens in the promise of America. Every lawmaker at every level of government must commit to do the same, especially for LGBTQ families and children under attack. The state of our union is only as strong as our action and commitment to ensure no marginalized person is left behind. LGBTQ voters are more motivated than ever to hold elected officials accountable in the midterms.”

GLAAD is monitoring the Biden Administration’s actions for LGBTQ Americans via the GLAAD Biden Accountability Tracker, documenting policy, personnel appointments and statements.

GLAAD 2022 LGBTQ Voter Pulse Poll

Last week, GLAAD released findings of the first of an ongoing series of polls that gauge and track motivation, enthusiasm, and issues leading up to the 2022 midterm elections in November.

Most Important Issues
32% COVID-19 response
28% Jobs and the economy
25% Healthcare
23% Environment / climate change
19% Inflation
18% Racial justice
|15% Voting rights
11% LGBTQ equality
8% Immigration 
7% Student debt
5% Other
4% Filibuster reform

Personal outcomes due to COVID-19 pandemic
46% Experienced increased mental health issues
27% Increased personal debt to make ends meet
23% Tested positive for COVID-19
23% Close friend or family member died from COVID-19
22% Involuntarily lost job or had work reduced
17% Changed living arrangements for financial reasons
12% Voluntarily quit or resigned from job

GLAAD's Guide for Media Covering anti-LGBTQ State Bills can be read here. It includes a checklist for reporters to include in their reporting on the bills.