Carroll County Times
Carroll County

Maryland Senate passes transgender rights bill

The Maryland Senate has passed a bill that would prohibit discrimination based on gender identity.

The Senate voted 32-15 on Tuesday to send Senate Bill 212 to the House. The bill prohibits discrimination based on gender identity in public accommodations, labor and employment, and housing.

There were 31 Democrats who voted for the bill and one Republican. Eleven Republicans opposed the bill, along with four Democrats.

The measure goes to the House of Delegates.

In 2013, a similar bill received an unfavorable report from the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee. Similar bills have been considered in General Assembly sessions dating to 2007, but have never gotten as far as Senate Bill 212.

In a statement sent after Tuesday's Senate vote, supporters of the legislation said it was "critical" the bill pass this year.

"No one should ever have to worry about losing their job or accessing safe and affordable housing simply because of who they are," said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, a Washington, D.C.-based civil rights organization advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality.