DELAWARE: Transgender Rights Bill Signed Into Law By Gov. Jack Markell
Delaware Gov. Jack Markell on Wednesday signed a bill that will add gender identity and expression to his state’s anti-discrimination and hate crimes laws. “Discrimination on basis of gender identity is inherently wrong,” he said. “Legislation to prohibit it is inherently right.” The state Senate by an 11-9 vote margin earlier in the day approved an amended version of Senate Bill 97 that passed in the Delaware House of Representatives on Tuesday.The Task Force reacts via press release:
Until today, Delaware was one of five states in the nation that had nondiscrimination protections on the basis of sexual orientation but not on the basis of gender identity. The other states still left are Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Maryland and New York. The Task Force is committed to ensuring protections in those states as well as passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act to provide federal employment protections.The HRC reacts via press release:
“The Delaware Legislature sent a clear message today that transgender residents deserve to be treated equally and protected under the law,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “Delaware advocates and lawmakers are standing up and ensuring that the First State is one which welcomes all people, and provides the same protections and opportunities.” “Equality Delaware is so grateful for the support and expertise of HRC in helping us pass the Gender Identity Nondiscrimination Bill,” said Equality Delaware President Lisa Goodman. “HRC stayed on the ground in Delaware through the entire process and was invaluable in helping us attain these protections for transgender Delawareans.”RELATED: An updated version of New York state's transgender rights bill, GENDA, was introduced three days ago. The bill has passed in the state Assembly six times, but continues to faces challenges in the state Senate. Supporters say they are optimistic about the bill's chances this time.