Massachuestts Marks One-Year of Transgender Protections Law as Opponents Threaten RepealBy Adam Polaski • October 4, 2017 • 11:17 am
October marks the one-year anniversary that Massachusetts’ transgender public accommodations law went into effect, ensuring protections for transgender residents statewide from discrimination in public places, including restaurants, shops, and hospitals.
Kasey Suffredini, acting CEO of Freedom for All Americans and co-chair of the Freedom for All Massachusetts coalition, which successfully passed the law and is now working to defend it from being repealed by a 2018 ballot measure, issued the following statement:
“One year of explicit protections for transgender people under Massachusetts state law has shown only a positive impact on families and communities, and none of the negative consequences that opponents claimed would take place. With transgender rights being threatened at the federal level and in the courts, it’s more important than ever to preserve existing protections at home. We cannot afford to go backwards. We are committed to doing everything we can to ensure that fairness and freedom remain the law for transgender people in Massachusetts in 2018.”
In 2016, Massachusetts became the 18th and most recent state in the country to update its nondiscrimination law to include explicit protections for transgender people in public places. The law was endorsed and signed by Massachusetts’ Republican Governor Charlie Baker in July 2016, and it went into effect on October 1. Opponents of the law have since submitted the low threshold of signatures necessary to force it onto the 2018 ballot for potential repeal.
Freedom for All Americans is a founding partner of Freedom for All Massachusetts and has dedicated Suffredini as a chair to the campaign since its inception. The coalition enjoys support from more than 250 businesses, 350 clergy and congregations, 11 labor unions representing more than 750,000 families, 16 statewide women’s and victim’s advocacy groups, every major professional sports team in New England, the state’s leading law enforcement associations, the entire MA congressional delegation, the state attorney general, bipartisan leadership in the House and Senate, the Senate President and the House Speaker, and more.
Freedom for All Americans currently contributes to the Freedom for all Massachusetts coalition in the form of communications outreach, digital strategy, lobbying, field support, and staffing key campaign leadership roles.