Violence in  a Relationship is Never Justified

NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence to Testify in Favor of Transgender Nondiscrimination Protections and Counter Myths about Sexual Assault in Bathrooms

Contact:
Jessica Eskeland
(603) 568-9357

CONCORD, N.H. — Later today a House committee will take up House Bill 478, a bipartisan bill that will update the state’s nondiscrimination laws to include protections for transgender individuals in housing, employment and public spaces. The NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence will join Freedom New Hampshire, The Business and Industry Association, the NH Civil Liberty Union, and the NH Association of Chiefs of Police in testifying in support of HB 478, a bipartisan bill that adds “gender identity” to NH’s non-discrimination laws and improves access to public accommodations, housing and employment for transgender people.

Some concerns have been raised about this bill permitting sexual predators to access women’s restrooms, but these assumptions lack an understanding of who sexual predators are and how they act. NH has strong state laws against predatory or invasive behavior in restrooms and elsewhere. Under this bill, indecent assault and harassment will remain illegal.

There are currently 18 states and more that 200 towns, cities and counties across the United States that protect transgender individuals from discrimination in housing, employment and public spaces, including every state in New England, except for New Hampshire. Of the hundreds of jurisdictions that have included “gender identity” into their civil rights laws, none of them have seen an increase in sexual violence and have actually seen an increase in public safety.

We appreciate concerns from those who seek to make NH safer from sexual predators, and encourage law makers to support this bill in order to accomplish this goal. Forcing anyone to use a bathroom that does not coincide with their gender identity actually increases their exposure to harassment and violence.

There are many myths about HB 478. You can get the facts about this important piece of nondiscrimination legislation here: http://www.freedomnewhampshire.org/mythbuster/

About the Coalition
NHCADSV is a statewide network of 13 independent member programs committed to ending sexual violence, domestic violence, and stalking, through direct services to victims, community education, and public policy advocacy. The NHCADSV and its 13 member programs do not discriminate based on gender, age, health status (including HIV-positive), physical, mental, or emotional ability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, socio-economic status, race, national origin, immigration status, or religious or political affiliation. For more information visit www.nhcadsv.org

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