Beacon Hill Considers Bill To Protect Transgender People From Discrimination

BOSTON (AP) — Transgender advocates are lobbying Massachusetts lawmakers to pass a bill designed to increase their legal protections.

The Committee on the Judiciary held a public hearing Wednesday at the Statehouse to hear testimony on a bill that would add the words “gender identity or expression” to the state’s existing nondiscrimination laws.

State Attorney General Martha Coakley testified in favor of the bill, which supporters say will help protect transgender people from discrimination when seeking a job or housing.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Joe Mathieu reports

Critics say the bill will lead to a breakdown in privacy in rest rooms, locker rooms and other single-gender facilities. They have labeled the legislation the “bathroom bill.”

Among the supporters of expanded legal protections for transgender people is Gov. Deval Patrick who said last year he would sign the bill.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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