NJ Passes Gender Protection Law

| Jan 8, 2008
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January 7, 2008 Today, the New Jersey General Assembly passed A4591/S2975 by a large majority of 65-10. This follows action last week in the state Senate where the bill passed unanimously 35-0. The law that passed will now go to Governor Corzine’s desk for his expected signature.

Basically, the bill adds gender identity and expression to the state’s hate crime law and gives teeth to New Jersey’s safe school, anti-bullying laws.

According to Garden State Equality specifically, “the new law does the following:

1. Adds ‘gender identity or expression’ as a protected class to the state hate crimes law.

2. Updates other parts of the hate crimes law by adding ‘national origin’ as a protected category, which thus far has been included in the law by interpreting ‘ethnicity’ to include such; and substitutes the more sensitive term ‘disability’ for ‘handicap.’

3. Specifies that a ‘mistake of fact’ by a defendant committing a hate crime is not a defense.

4. Requires two hours of hate-crimes sensitivity training for all new police officers.

5. Specifies suggested sentencing options to which judges can sentence defendants, such as anti-hate sensitivity training.

6. Creates a study Commission on Bullying in Schools, which has nine months to investigate the problem and make recommendations to the Governor and legislature for further legislation.

7. Requires schools post their anti-bullying policies on their websites, and to distribute their anti-bullying policies, within 120 days after enactment of the law.”

Information from The National Center for Transgender Equality served as the basis for this report.

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Category: Transgender Community News


About the Author ()

Angela Gardner is a founding member of The Renaissance Transgender Association, Inc., the former editor of that organization's newsletter and magazine, Transgender Community News. She wrote the Diva of Dish column for TGF in the late 1990s and was the Editor of LadyLike magazine until its untimely demise. She is currently the Editor of TGF. She has appeared in film and television shows portraying TG characters, as well as representing Renaissance on numerous talk shows. In her idle hours she keeps busy producing her monthly TG parties, Angela's Laptop Lounge.

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  1. says:

    Maybe we can win this state by state, at least until the politics of fear and entitlement are swept away in DC.


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