January 21st, 2010

CambridgeCityHall

A nice afternoon at the statehouse

Today was lobby day at the Massachusetts State House for the Transgender Equality Bill: "An Act Relative to Gender-Based Discrimination and Hate Crimes" that adds the category "gender identity or expression" to our hate crime laws as well as to the employment, housing, credit, public accommodations, and public education non-discrimination laws.

It looks very likely that it will pass this year so that Massachusetts will join 13 other states who have similar laws. A majority of the legislators are listed as sponsors but there are many potential slips between the cup and the lip with legislatures. The Mass Transgender Political Coalition organized this session. It commenced with a rally and speeches by lots of people - some of which I missed because I was late from another meeting - and then there was the opportunity to talk to legislators and other people.

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I will send email to Tarr and Ferrante.

I didn't bother talking to my Cambridge reps (I have no senator since my ex-senator is in prison) with the special election to replace a few months away. The Cambridge reps are all OK and I confirmed this with Carl Sciortino, the (cute, gay) rep from Somerville who is the chief sponsor of the legislation; we had nice chat about various issues. Actually I think the western senator is not OK.

I still don't know what the GLBT Commission can do to help, but I intend upon checking into this before next week's meeting.

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