January 29, 2013 at 11:15 am EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
BREAKING: Maryland lawmakers introduce transgender rights bill

Dana Beyer, Maryland, gay news, Washington Blade

Dana Beyer (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Maryland lawmakers on Tuesday introduced a bill that would ban anti-transgender discrimination in the workplace, housing and public accommodations.

The Fairness for All Marylanders Act of 2013 that gay state Sen. Rich Madaleno (D-Montgomery County) and state Sen. Jamie Raskin (D-Montgomery County) introduced has more than 20 co-sponsors. These include state Sen. Allan Kittleman (R-Howard County.)

The proposal died in committee last April because Senate President Thomas V. “Mike” Miller (D-Prince George’s and Calvert Counties) reportedly blocked a vote on it. Miller has since backed the proposal.

“Put simply, the process of passing a bill requires that you line up the votes you need to make it through a chamber,” Dana Beyer, executive director of Gender Rights Maryland, told the Washington Blade. “That process is eased considerably when those legislators are willing to sign on as co-sponsors. I am very pleased we can show this degree of support in the Senate, which I attribute to the diligent work of Senators Madaleno and Raskin and their staffs. The trans community should be very hopeful that this is the year.”

Equality Maryland Executive Director Carrie Evans also welcomed the proposal’s introduction.

“The protections in this bill are long overdue,” she said. “We are confident the General Assembly will demonstrate, as they did in 2012, that we are a state that treats all of its citizens with dignity and equality under the law.”

Maryland is among the 21 states and D.C. that have banned discrimination based on sexual orientation, while the nation’s capital and 16 states have passed laws that ban anti-trans discrimination.

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

  • peter rosenstein

    I am pleased to see that Mike Miller now backs the bill. It takes longer to open some people;s eyes and I have always believed Miller is basically a good person.

    • http://blazewing.paganlife.ca Blazewing

      Perhaps Brennan and her Brennanites need to get back in the kitchen and make the grownups some sammiches.

      • http://www.transmaryland.org Jenna Fischetti

        I am certainly NOT in agreement with the views expressed by Ms Brennan, nor others who believe transgender people should not have equality. Even when they go as far as to make disparaging claims, using flawed grounds which equate to unwarranted propositions.

        However, sexist and abuser’s language such as “sammiches” is offensive to survivors of assault and abuse.

        Discourse is not served. Please refrain from such comments.

  • Jeri

    If I am reading this correctly. Brennan just said:

    Gay Male – Radfem definition of a trasngender woman.
    Trans Woman – Radfem definition of a transgender man.

    This correct Cathy? Just wanting to make sure I understand the context of your comment.

  • Jeri

    Cathy Brennan jumped the shark a while ago and has since launched horrific attacks against the trans community, specifically against trans women. I assure you, listening to what Brennan has to say when it comes to trans rights is not in the best interest of the trans community. If she suggests something for trans it has to be bad.

  • Jeri

    BTW, sexnotgender is a smoke screen. Do a search on some of the authors on the site and see what they really think about trans women. TW Extreme transphobia

      • http://endablog2.wordpress.com I. Tohljaseaux

        “the EEOC has been taking complaints from transgender Marylanders regarding discrimination since 2001”

        The issue here, however, is Maryland state law – and no one has ever been able to point to any relevant, binding, published, findable-by-non-attorneys aspect of Maryland state law which explicitly states that trans people AS TRANS PEOPLE have anti-discrimination protection under Maryland state law.

        In that sense, 2013 would be shaping up to be the same as 2011, which shaped up to be the same as 2001.

        Have a nice day!

  • Pingback: O'Malley 'absolutely' building support for Md. trans bill | Gay News | Washington Blade - America's Leading Gay News Source()

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