Public Comment

U.S. Customs and Border Protection: Public Comment

June 2022

In April 2022, U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a request for information on how to ensure its regulations, policies, and programs align with the Biden Administration’s equity goals for underserved communities, including people of color and LGBTQ+ people.

  • Luis A. Vasquez
    Staff Attorney, Former
Public Comment


In January 2021, President Biden issued an executive order directing federal agencies to adopt a comprehensive approach to advancing equity for all, including in federal employment, policies, programs, and services. In response, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) sought information on the extent to which its processes, programs, regulations, collections of information, and policies perpetuate systemic barriers to opportunities and benefits for people of color and other underserved groups.


LGBT adults in the U.S. are demographically diverse. An estimated 58% of LGBT adults are female. In addition, 21% of LGBT adults identify as Latino/a or Hispanic, 12% as Black, and 5% as more than one race. A longstanding body of research shows that LGBT people in the U.S. face high rates of violence and discrimination related to their sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI). For instance, more than half of LGBTQ people report having experienced threats of violence, and approximately three out of four have been verbally insulted or abused. Results from a recent survey found that one-third (31%) of LGBT respondents reported experiencing discrimination or harassment based on their SOGI in the workplace within the past five years.


Scholars present extensive research detailing persistent stigma and discrimination faced by LGBT people, including in the workplace and while attempting to obtain services. In addition, they recommend that CBP’s materials and processes related to the non-discrimination protections provided by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other civil rights statutes be updated to be clear, consistent, and fully inclusive of SOGI discrimination consistent with the law.

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U.S. Customs and Border Protection: Public Comment