Governor Charlie Baker on Friday signed a bill into law that broadens
Massachusetts laws banning discrimination in public accommodations to
include gender identity.
signed the bill a day after the Democrat-controlled House and Senate
approved a final version of the legislation.
the law takes effect on October 1, Massachusetts will become the 18th
state to ensure full protections for transgender people.
one should be discriminated against in Massachusetts because of their
gender identity,” Baker said on Friday.
had previously said that he would sign the House version of the bill,
which included language that sought to address some privacy concerns,
including requiring the creation of guidelines for business to follow
and instructing the state's attorney general to advise law
enforcement on how to deal with people who assert gender identity for
“an improper purpose.” Most of that language made it into the
compromise legislation extends additional protections to the
commonwealth's transgender community, and includes language to
address the public safety concerns expressed by some by requiring the
attorney general to issue regulations to protect against people
abusing the law,” Baker added.
rights advocates had sought such protections in Massachusetts for
nearly a decade.