Connecticut Anti-Discrimination Laws for Transgender People

Posted by on Dec 4, 2013 in Transgender Rights

On July 1, 2011, Governor Dannel Malloy signed Public Act 11-55, “An Act Concerning Discrimination,” into law, making Connecticut the 4th state in New England and the 15th state in the United States “to provide explicit anti-discrimination protections for transgender people.”

The act, which went into effect on October 1, 2011, protects against discrimination in employment, education, housing, public accommodations, and in any other areas in which sex discrimination is prohibited.

According to the law, “gender identity or expression” is a person’s gender-related identity, appearance or behavior, whether or not that gender-related identity, appearance or behavior is different from that traditionally associated with the person’s physiology or assigned sex at birth, which gender-related identity can be shown by providing evidence including, but not limited to, medical history, care or treatment of the gender-related identity, consistent and uniform assertion of the gender-related identity or any other evidence that the gender-related identity is sincerely held, part of a person’s core identity or not being asserted for an improper purpose.

GLAD’s excellent publication Connecticut:  Legal Protections for Transgender People further clarifies that the law:

protects people based on their gender identity as well as on their gender-related appearance and behavior, what we commonly think of as a person’s gender expression. The definition also makes clear that a person is protected against discrimination based on both their gender identity and their gender expression (including appearance or behavior) regardless of what their assigned birth sex or physical anatomy looks like.

The act does not provide specific ways that must be used to prove a person’s gender expression, but it does include a list of possibilities.  For example, it includes medical history and medical treatment as a way to prove a person’s gender identity.  It also indicates non-medical ways to prove the person’s gender identity “such as consistent and uniform assertion of that identity as well as ‘any other evidence’ that the person’s identity is sincerely held, part of a person’s core identity or not being asserted for an improper purpose.”

Therefore, Connecticut law provides protections for transgender people regardless of the person’s stage of transition and whether the person has undergone medical gender transition.