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New Hampshire Kicks Off 2017 Legislative Session with Pro-Transgender Bill

Post submitted by Ryan Rowe, HRC’s Associate Regional Field Director for the Northern Region

While 2017 started off with a wave of anti-LGBTQ legislation in states across the nation, New Hampshire is on a different path. HRC has joined Freedom New Hampshire, a coalition committed to moving forward the fight for positive protections for transgender people in the Granite State.

Together with faith leaders, businesses large and small, law enforcement, community advocates, schools and grassroots supporters, Freedom New Hampshire is working to build a groundswell of support for equal treatment of transgender people. The campaign will make the case that discrimination has no place in the Granite State and will urge the New Hampshire General Court to pass House Bill (HB) 478.

Filed in January, HB 478 is a common sense update to long-standing state laws. New Hampshire has prohibited discrimination on the basis of race, physical or mental disability, religious creed, and other categories for decades. In 1998, the legislature updated state laws to include protections on the basis of sexual orientation. When passed, HB 478 will ensure that transgender people are afforded these same protections, and cannot be fired, evicted, or denied service just because of who they are.

HRC has been on the ground this month helping to mobilize the full spectrum of voices of those in New Hampshire who believe this basic protection in overdue. A committee hearing could take place in February. To get involved, volunteer, share your story of discrimination and more, go to http://www.freedomnewhampshire.org and/or contact Ryan Rowe, HRC’s Associate Regional Field Director for the Northern region at ryan.rowe@hrc.org.