Today and tomorrow, please call you Senators at the Capitol Switchboard (202-224-3121) and urge them to support the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act, which is being offered as the Leahy/Collins/Kennedy/Snowe Hate Crime Amendment to S. 1391, the Department of Defense Authorization bill.
The Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act significantly improves our current hate crimes prevention laws. This bill expands the coverage of existing hate crime laws to include crimes based not only on race, color, religion, and national origin, but also crimes based on the victim’s actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or disability.
This bill does not infringe on freedoms of speech and religion, but provides the federal government jurisdiction to prosecute hate crimes where current law or local law enforcement actions are inadequate. The Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act will protect people that are subjected to violence and intimidation just for being who they are.
The Senate is likely to vote on this bill before the end of the week. Please call your Senators TODAY and TOMORROW and ask them to pass the Leahy/Collins/Kennedy/Snowe Hate Crime Amendment to the Department of Defense Authorization bill, S. 1391.