Thursday, May 24, 2018

YES for Human Rights

This November, basic protections for our transgender neighbors will be on the ballot in Massachusetts. We must vote YES for fairness, respect, and dignity by upholding the law to protect the rights of transgender people in public spaces.

Right now it’s illegal to discriminate against a person simply because they are transgender. A small group of opponents wants to change that and take Massachusetts backwards. Their referendum question would repeal our state law that protects transgender people from discrimination in public places, including restaurants, stores, and doctors’ offices. If the current law is repealed, transgender people will no longer have explicit protection from discrimination in all places the public is welcome. A YES vote keeps the current law as it is.

This is about human rights. Transgender people have the right to the same basic protections as everyone else—to live their lives with safety, privacy, and dignity—as provided in our Constitution. Protecting people from discrimination, including people who are transgender, is about treating all people as we want to be treated.

The law protects transgender youth, who continue to face mistreatment and bullying; repealing our state’s protections would put them at even greater risk of harassment, discrimination, and even violence. Every young person deserves a fair chance to succeed in school, in their community, and prepare for their future—including young people who are transgender.

Our nondiscrimination law is working well and it’s time to turn our focus elsewhere. No one should fear for their safety because of the color of their skin, who they love, or how they identify. Massachusetts’ nondiscrimination law allows transgender people to live their lives free from harassment and discrimination. Join me in voting YES this November to defend transgender equality in Massachusetts.