Today is Trans Day of Remembrance, a day for reflecting on the transgender lives lost to violence, harassment and discrimination.
America’s transgender population experiences disproportionate rates of violence and bullying as compared to other classes. They are also more likely to be the victims of police brutality and harassment. Transgender youth make up to 40% of homeless youth and the rate of suicide or attempted suicide amongst transgender young people is staggering.
These statistics have held true for too many years. But today, Massachusetts legislators have an opportunity before them to take action and pass SB 725 & HB 1577 to fully protect transgender Bay Staters from discrimination in public spaces.
Though this bill has been tabled until the legislative session resumes after the holidays in 2016, it remains a hot topic issue for lawmakers.
Just yesterday, the Senate President announced that the Senate “stands ready to vote on [full transgender protections], as soon as [they] have access to the bill.”
This is the first public Senate commitment to vote to pass SB 735 & HB 1577. Also in the past week, the Speaker of the House announced his public support of the legislation.
These internal endorsements coupled with impressive support from outside the Statehouse—including 170+ businesses, major chambers of commerce, lead law enforcement associations, top-tier colleges and universities, municipal leaders and transgender youth and their families—means increased pressure on the Joint Committee on the Judiciary to take a swift vote when session resumes.
In the interim, we will be working day and night to keep full transgender protections as a top priority for legislators. To support this effort, click here and submit your story of discrimination and why you support the immediate passage of SB 735 & HB 1577.