Friday, April 3, 2009

lobby day

My next adventure out en femme will find me at our state capital lobbying state legislators to pass legislation to protect transgenders from discrimination.

Although discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression is pervasive, Connecticut has no explicit law protecting individuals from discrimination based on gender identity or expression in employment, education, housing, public accommodations, and credit. HB 6452, An Act Concerning Discrimination, would remedy this by adding the phrase “gender identity or expression” to Connecticut’s existing non-discrimination laws, prohibiting this discrimination, and making our state safe for all residents.

This bill gives Connecticut’s Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO) the authority to investigate complaints of discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression and order appropriate remedies if such discrimination is found. It applies the same rules, procedures, and remedies that apply to other types of prohibited discrimination.

Tuesday is Lobby Day. The day begins with a 10 AM meeting in the Legislative Office Building in Hartford where we will be prepped on how to lobby our state representatives. Thereafter, we will actually lobby our state senator and state representative (like the federal government, Connecticut has two legislative houses, but only one senator and one representative per district).

My state senator has been an opponent of bill in the past, but now that he has announced that he is running for Chris Dodd's seat in the US Senate, I wonder if his views have become more diverse, but I doubt it.

My state representative is a Democrat and will probably be more open-minded. When I e-mailed him about the bill in the past, he replied that he would give it a fair shake.

And so it goes.


  1. Staci
    Pennsylvania's House Bill 300 is very similar the the CT HB 6452 and it passed the State Government Committee in the PA House of Representatives on March 11. We'll have to see how it does in the Senate, but this is the first time it has made it out of committee and actually made it to a vote.

    Good luck on your lobbying effort.


  2. Colleen --- Thank you for the "good luck" wish; I think we will need it!