Next legislative session, New Hampshire lawmakers will again debate whether to include “gender identity” under the state’s anti-discrimination laws.
New Hampshire statute currently bars discrimination based on factors including age, race, religion and national origin. Last year, the GOP-majority in the New Hampshire House narrowly voted down a bill that sought to add gender identity to the list.
Backers of the bill including Democrat Ed Butler, who represents Hart’s Location, say transgender residents deserve protections in areas of employment, housing and public accommodation. He’s lined up a bipartisan group of co-sponsors to House Bill 1319, and believes the measure has the votes to pass.
“There has been a lot of work done in the past year to work to communicate with our elected representatives and with the community to explain the need for the legislation,” says Butler.
Some opponents say the measure could allow sexual predators to hide behind transgender protections.