Both Nevada and Connecticut have advanced bills that protect transgender individuals from various forms of discrimination, but a Tennessee bill would rescind such protections in Nashville:
- CONNECTICUT: The House of Representatives approved a bill barring discrimination based on gender identity in employment, housing, and public accommodations. It now goes to the Senate.
- MICHIGAN: Republicans continue to use the state budget to attack the LGBT community, and the latest attempt is a provision that would require university counseling programs to “report” on whether they are accommodating students’ religious beliefs adequately. This conscience clause stems from the case of Julea Ward, who was expelled when she declined to counsel a gay student.
- MINNESOTA: Only one more House vote is required for the constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage to advance to a referendum. Opponents have been protesting while proponents have been repeating a tired meme: “Let The Voters Decide” (whether to discriminate).
– NEVADA: The legislature has passed a bill prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of gender identity and it awaits Gov. Brian Sandoval’s (R) signature. Two other bills are still working their way through the Assembly that would offer similar protections for housing and public accommodations.
- NEW YORK: The clock is ticking to advance marriage equality in New York, and Michael Long, chairman of the Conservative Party, may be the primary obstacle. Despite the introduction of a bill that would actually reverse the recognition of out-of-state marriages, a report shows that marriage equality would earn the state $391 million.
- NORTH CAROLINA: Both proponents and opponents of a proposed amendment to the Constitution banning same-sex marriage are speaking out. The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins led the charge in an anti-equality rally this week, but a group of faith leaders held their own press conference in favor of equality.
- OKLAHOMA: A bill that would have strengthened anti-bullying measures in Oklahoma failed in the House of Representatives this week.
- RHODE ISLAND: The House has approved the controversial civil unions bill with a 62-11 vote. It now goes to the Senate for consideration.
- SOUTH CAROLINA: A bill that would provide fully inclusive state-level hate crimes protections has been introduced. Last time the bill was considered, it failed by only four votes.
- TENNESSEE: After being strongly pushed by companies like FedEx, AT&T, Nissan, and Comcast, the legislature has passed a bill that would prohibit Tennessee municipalities from passing nondiscrimination ordinances inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity. If Gov. Bill Haslam (R) signs the bill, it will effectively rescind Nashville’s nondiscrimination protections.
- VIRGINIA: Supporters of adoption by same-sex couples are demanding the Board of Social Services allow more time for public comment before new regulations are adopted that would not allow same-sex couples to adopt or be foster parents.
Keep track of how LGBT issues are advancing in the states at our State LGBT Watch.