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Gender Identity and Expression

True equality under the law includes all members of the LGBTQ community, including the transgender community. This is about basic human rights – but there are also strong economic reasons why New Hampshire should endeavor to be a national leader on LGBTQ equality and inclusiveness. The workforce of the future will be the most diverse ever, and will value diversity equal of opportunity, and a culture of respect and inclusivity as they select the communities where they will live, work, raise a family, and start a business.

According to the Transgender Law Center, New Hampshire is further ahead than some states in protecting LGBTQ laws protecting individual rights. Specifically, former Gov. Hassan’s Executive Order expanded anti-discrimination legal protection for state employees and contractors on the basis of gender identity and expression.

However, I am the only candidate for Governor in either party actively campaigning to move us towards the front of the pack nationally in expanding non-discrimination laws related to gender identity and expression to the private sector. We currently have such non-discrimination laws for New Hampshire residents based on sexual orientation, but are one of only two states (Scott Walker’s Wisconsin being the other) that offer such legal protections based on sexual orientation – but not gender identity or expression.

We must prioritize seeking equivalent non-discrimination protection for such areas as:

Early in 2017, Governor Sununu and House Republicans had an opportunity to support a bill that would have joined 20 other states in providing these legal protections. The bill was passed by a House committee in a strongly bipartisan vote, 15-2, and was supported by the NH Police Chiefs Association, the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence, and the Business and Industry Association. When asked about it the day before the full House vote, Gov. Sununu said, “We are just kind of monitoring it and seeing where it comes out.” The next day, it narrowly failed, with no leadership from the corner office.

My core mission is to help make us the best state in America to start a family, and start a business. To achieve this goal, we need the talent, energy, youthfulness, and entrepreneurial spirit of all people. “Live Free or Die” means that New Hampshire should be a national example of inclusion, to be who you are, and to encourage others around you to be who they are, as well.

A demonstrated commitment to fiscal responsibility, and proudly inclusive, progressive values represents what the future of New Hampshire can and should look like, if we are going to thrive.