New York passes historic transgender anti-discrimination law

The New York State Legislature has passed the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), adding gender identity as a protected class in housing, employment, and public accommodations.

The bill has been put forward in the New York State Legislature every year since 2003, and cleared the State Assembly 8 times since 2008 only to be voted down in the historically Republican-controlled State Senate.

Governor Cuomo has pledged to sign the bill into law, ensuring protections for the estimated 78,000 transgender adults living in New York State

“I think the reason that it’s taken so long here in New York is because we have had a [State] Senate that is out of touch with the vast majority of New Yorkers,” said Eric Lesh, executive director of the LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York in an interview with The Daily Beast. “We’ve had a Senate that’s been dragging its heels, that’s been controlled by Republican legislators for so long – and that’s why a group of trans and LGBT people have been working their butts off to make sure that we brought about progressive change once and for all.”

Read more at The Daily Beast.