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Maryland Gender-Identification Bill Passes In House

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The Maryland Senate must vote on the Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act before April 11, when the legislative session ends.
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The Maryland Senate must vote on the Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act before April 11, when the legislative session ends.

House Bill 235 seeks to ban gender-identity discrimination based on employment, housing and credit.

Morgan Meneses-Sheets, executive director of Equality Maryland -- a state-based lobbying group for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender community -- says although she is pleased by the support in the House, she's disappointed the bill lacks protection for public accommodation facilities such as restrooms, an unpopular provision with similar measures in other states.

"You know, the choice was getting three out of the four categories that was included in the bill, or walking away for another year, not having gained any protections for some of the most marginalized members of our society," she says.

Meneses-Sheets thinks this measure, unlike the state's recently failed same-sex marriage bill, will pass the Senate vote.

"They can understand that someone in the workplace should be judged on their performance and skills," she says.

The full Senate must vote on the bill before the legislative session adjourns, April 11.

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