WASHINGTON, March 15, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) expressed disappointment over the Maryland Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee's failure to pass out of committee SB 449, the Fairness for All Marylanders Act of 2013. SB 449 would have prohibited discrimination in employment, credit, housing and public accommodations based on gender identity and expression.
Although the nondiscrimination protections for transgendered people in SB 449 already exist for nearly half of the state's residents through local laws prohibiting discrimination based on gender identity or expression in Montgomery County, Howard County, Baltimore City and Baltimore County, 19 out of the 20 remaining counties do not have the ability to pass such measures. If passed, SB 449 would have extended nondiscrimination protections to transgender people throughout the state.
"A critical element of ADL's mission of seeking justice and fair treatment for all people compels us to combat bias and discrimination in whatever form it takes and against whomever it may be directed," said Melissa Gluck, ADL's Assistant Regional Director. "In our experience, discrimination against any individual or group of people not only hurts the specific individuals it targets, but also negatively affects the broader group whose members face this discrimination, as well as the community as a whole."
"Discrimination based on one's gender identity or sexual orientation, is as pernicious as discrimination based on those categories explicitly prohibited by current law such as race, sex and religion, and the law should provide equal and unambiguous protection from this form of discrimination. We can only hope that there will be a renewed effort to visit a similar bill in the future, so that all transgendered Marylanders will receive the protections they so rightfully deserve," said Ms. Gluck.