Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer-identified people (LGBTQ) face discrimination in their daily lives. All people should be treated fairly and equally! LGBTQ rights are both political and personal for me. I couldn’t be prouder of a beloved gay member of my immediate family.
Fortunately, Massachusetts was and is a leading state in the fight for marriage equality and equal rights. We have laws that protect against discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations.
In 2014, my colleagues and I on the Board of Aldermen proudly and unanimously amended Somerville’s anti-discrimination ordinance to add “gender identity and expression.” The change addressed the issue of discrimination against members of the transgender community in housing, employment, education, contracts, and financial transactions as well as equal access to public areas such as retail establishments, transit, and restaurants.
Our action predated a statewide law to address transgender discrimination in public areas by two years. I support Somerville’s LGBT Services Office’s work to eliminate prejudice and oppression based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression in Somerville.