Assemblymember Bronson: Legislation Affirms Rights to Respect, Dignity and Freedom from Discrimination

Assemblymember Harry B. Bronson (D-Rochester/Chili/Henrietta) helped pass a series of anti-discrimination bills, including the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA). This is the 10th consecutive year that GENDA has passed in the Assembly.

“No matter who you are or what you look like, who you love or where you come from, everyone has the right to a life of respect and dignity without fear,” said Bronson. “Particularly right now, we must take a strong stand against discrimination and oppression of all kinds.”

GENDA expands anti-discrimination protections to include gender identity and expression in addition to the already protected categories of sex, creed, nationality, disability, military status, marital status and sexual orientation (A.3358). It also defines crimes against transgender individuals as hate crimes and prohibits discrimination in housing, education and employment based on gender identity and expression.

“So far just this year, at least seven transgender women have been murdered,” said Bronson. “This legislation sends the message that we won’t tolerate the violence and hatred transgender people encounter every day.”

Bronson also supported a bill prohibiting employment discrimination against religious attire, including facial hair (A.4977). The third measure extends the anti-discrimination protections of the state’s Human Rights Law to all public schools (A.6659). The bill clarifies ambiguity in the law that led to the protections pertaining only to private schools.

“Where there is discrimination, there is a threat to the freedom we all cherish, and I’ll do everything possible to stop it,” said Bronson. “I’m committed to protecting the rights of all New Yorkers.”