New York Assembly Passes Trans Protection Bill


The New York Assembly has for the fifth time passed a vital trans rights protections bill, moving the bill on to the Senate which has repeatedly allowed the bill to die.

The bill, known as the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA),passed with broad bipartisan support on Monday. The legislation has been approved by the lower chamber in the 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 sessions. The bill must now move on to the Senate, but it is unclear if the legislation will meet with more success than in past years where it has repeatedly been ignored.

It is currently still legal for New York employers to fire someone on grounds of their gender identity or expression, and for a trans person to be kicked out of their rented accommodation simply because of their identity.

GENDA would extend basic civil rights protections to cover trans citizens in employment, public accommodations, the housing and credit sectors, and in education. The bill is also designed to add gender identity to the state’s hate crimes statute.

“Today, the New York State Assembly, yet again, demonstrated their commitment to making sure that all New Yorkers, including transgender New Yorkers, are treated fairly and granted equal protection under the law,” said Lynn A. Faria, Interim Executive Director of the Empire State Pride Agenda. “Nobody should have to live in fear that they can be legally fired for reasons that have nothing to do with their job performance, and that is exactly what this bill would prevent.”

“The New York State Assembly, under the leadership of Speaker Sheldon Silver and Assemblymember Richard Gottfried, has consistently set an example on transgender rights, and today is no exception,” continued Faria. “Now it is time for the State Senate to remedy the patchwork of protections that cover transgender people in localities and counties across the state and pass this statewide law.”

The Assembly’s passing of GENDA comes on the heels of last week’s ruling by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that federal law protects people from gender discrimination in employment and that this protection extends to transgender people.

It is estimated that around 78% of New Yorkers are in favor of a transgender civil rights bill. Sixteen states and the District of Columbia already have similar laws on the books, while several NY cities including Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo, Ithaca, New York City and Rochester have passed trans-inclusive nondiscrimination laws.


Related Reading:

Landmark Employment Ruling Protects Trans Rights

Latina Trans Women Report Violence & Harassment from Police

Obama Won’t Sign LGBT Discrimination Ban Anytime Soon

Image used under the Creative Commons Attribution License with thanks to Kaitlyn Tikkun.


Stefanie D.
Stefanie D.6 years ago

Meanwhile the ASSEMBLY is enlightened and aware, because they are closest to the people.
And the SENATE is IGNORANT, and do NOT care what the enlightened, well informed and aware people really want.

Stefanie D.
Stefanie D.6 years ago

John M... is unfathomably IGNORANT.

Who doesn't know that WOMEN who are XY that are BORN VAGINAL, EXIST?

Who doesn't know that MEN who are XX that are BORN PENILE, YET have a UTERUS and MENSTRUATE, EXIST?

Such folks are considered 'INTERSEX'.

HOWEVER, ALL that are 'TRANS' happen to develop an ATYPICAL, GENDER IDENTITY for their developed BIRTH SEX. They aren't 'crazy' for self-identifying a gender identity non-conforming to 'typical' folks of a given birth sex.


And so, should the rest of us.

Plus, there are so many other diverse variations of HUMANS naturally that are ATYPICAL, that one should THINK TWICE to GENERALIZE about ANYONE'S BODY or MIND.

Luvenia V.
Luvenia V6 years ago

I am going to tell you the most shocking and well kept secret ever to happen in the tiny southern town I was born in.

A young man collapsed while playing basketball in school. He was rushed to the hospital and almost died before they found the problem. You see even though he (she) had all the body parts on the outside that said he was a male, on the inside he had MORE female body parts than male. The person they thought was a male was going through puberty and was having a period on the inside.

To make a long story short, he was moved to a hospital up north where he underwent many surgeries and counseling and he is now the woman she was meant to be. They moved while he was still in the hospital because they knew that their child would not stand a chance in hell of living a normal life there. Everything is NOT black and white and judging others only makes you look like a fool.

Luvenia V.
Luvenia V6 years ago

John M., I would love to know if you ever took Science and if so how much did you learn. There in fact many people born as both sexes. In fact “IF” you were to take the time you will see that until quite close to the end of the pregnancy the sex of the child could go either way OR both way.

However if you were correct which you are NOT then this would be a matter of equal rights or the right to ones privacy. Grab a Science book John and study. You will have to grab a book that goes beyond junior high school however.

Debbie Brady
Debbie Brady6 years ago

When 78% of the people in a State are in favor of something, it is the duty of their elected representatives to pass it into law. Hopefully the NY Senate will comply with the wishes of the people.

Then New York can join my State (Colorado) and 15 others plus the District of Colombia, the Veterans Association, the Department of Housing and Development and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in recognizing that transgender rights are human rights, nothing more and nothing less.

John Mansky
John Mansky6 years ago

You are what you were born with,NOT,what you want to be!!!

Cathryn C.
Cathryn C6 years ago

Would someone please light a fire under the NY Senate? They are already providing the hot dogs.

Drusilla P.
Drusilla P6 years ago

Thanks for the info.

William Seuffert

With all the problems in the world and on down to states that politicians need to work on they still have to work on this? How sad that in this country as well as others a person who is transgender can do their job pay their bills but have to worry about being fired or evicted. Makes this country more and more a fascist country. Let's get over this prejudice so more important things can be attended to. *(not that this is not important but it is ashame that it even has to be an issue)

John B.
John B6 years ago

Good news ( for the fifth time). Which political party controls the NY Senate? thanks for the article Steve.