Employment and Housing Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in Idaho
By Amira Hasenbush, Christy Mallory
Approximately 21,000 LGBT workers in Idaho are vulnerable to employment discrimination absent state or federal legal protections. Boise, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho Falls, Ketchum, Moscow, Pocatello and Sandpoint have local ordinances
that prohibit employment and housing discrimination against LGBT people, but they do not provide as much protection for LGBT people as the state’s law, which is enforced by a fully funded Commission on Human Rights.
Approximately 72% of Idaho’s workforce is not covered by a local ordinance prohibiting employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, and 75% of Idaho residents are not protected against housing discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. A statewide non-discrimination law would result in ten additional complaints being filed with the Idaho Commission on Human Rights each year. The cost of enforcing the additional complaints would be negligible. At most, it would cost the state approximately $22,000 annually; only 2.2 percent of the Idaho Commission on Human Rights’ annual budget.