The Massachusetts House late on Tuesday approved a bill that bars discrimination in the workplace against transgender people, the AP reported.

After an hour-long debate, lawmakers approved the bill with a 95 to 58 vote and sent it to the Senate, which is expected to take up the measure on Wednesday.

A public accommodations section of the bill which has previously proved controversial was dropped from the bill two days ago, a concession designed to boost lawmaker support.

Critics argued that such protections would hurt women and children.

“It's a victory for the safety, privacy and modesty of women and children who expect to be safe and secure in public bathrooms in the commonwealth,” said Kris Mineau, president of the Massachusetts Family Institute, a group that opposes gay rights.

The bill would also amend the state's existing hate crime laws to include gender identity and expression.

“Transgender individuals in Massachusetts face unacceptably high levels of violence and discrimination in their daily lives,” state Rep. Carl Sciortino, a co-sponsor of the bill, told ABC News. “This is a community that has disproportionally high levels of not only discrimination, but poverty.”

This is the first time the bill has made it to a vote since first being introduced in 2007.

According to a 2011 study by the Williams Institute, roughly 33,000 people in Massachusetts identify as transgender.

Governor Deval Patrick has said he would sign the bill into law, if approved by lawmakers.