This Week’s Developments in LGBTQ Nondiscrimination

March 29, 2019 • 3:13 pm
Businesses warn TX lawmakers to not pass anti-LGBTQ legislation; MA legislature passes conversion therapy ban; Sunday marks Transgender Day of Visibility
WASHINGTON– Tech giants, Facebook, Apple, and Google have all joined in a chorus of opposition against two dangerous, anti-LGBTQ bills making their way through the Texas legislature. In Massachusetts, state lawmakers have voted to ban so-called conversion therapy for minors. The state’s Republican Governor has signaled that he will sign the ban into law. And Sunday is Transgender Day of Visibility, when transgender people worldwide are recognized and celebrated for who they are. Freedom for All Americans’ Weekly LGBTQ Nondiscrimination Update has all the latest developments that should be on your radar:

Companies Warn of Economic Impact of Anti-LGBTQ Bills in Texas
Major tech companies including Apple, Google, and Facebook are speaking out against harmful bills in Texas that would discriminate against LGBTQ people. The companies, along with several others, signed on to a letter to state lawmakers in opposition to two bills – one which would undo local rules prohibiting discrimination against LGBTQ people and another which would give legal cover to occupational license holders to deny service or turn away LGBTQ clients. A coalition of businesses called Texas Competes said in a press conference this week that the legislation would damage Texas’ reputation.

To get a better sense of how LGBTQ Americans experience discrimination every single day, please visit Faces of Freedom– a new resource that elevates the stories of LGBTQ people and allies.

Massachusetts Lawmakers Vote to Ban Conversion Therapy
The dangerous practice of so-called conversion therapy will soon be banned in the state of Massachusetts. The state senate voted this week to outlaw it for use on minors. It passed with overwhelming bipartisan support in both houses of the legislature, with not a single opposition vote in the senate. The bill is now headed to the desk of Republican Governor, Charlie Baker, who has signaled that he will sign it into law. Conversion therapy has been widely discredited by medical professionals and has been shown to cause harm to LGBTQ youth.

Transgender Day of Visibility
Sunday is Transgender Day of Visibility, a time to recognize and celebrate transgender people, while raising awareness of discrimination faced by transgender people worldwide. In recent months, transgender Americans have celebrated major victories in states like New York and New Hampshire, which both recently added gender identity as a protected class in state law. Sunday is a good reminder though that while these are major accomplishments, the work towards full equality is far from over.

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