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New Hampshire committee rejects trans protection bill

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The Senate Judiciary Committee of the New Hampshire state Senate has voted 5-0 to reject new protections for trans people.

The bill would have added “gender identity” or “gender expression” to current laws protecting from discrimination on the basis of sex, age, race, creed, colour, sexual orientation or religion.

State representative Ed Butler, who sponsored the bill, said it was “a simple little non-discrimination bill” which would prevent trans individuals from losing their homes and jobs on the basis of their trans status.

It passed the state House by just one vote. It will be voted on by the full Senate next week.

The Judiciary committee said the Human Rights Commission was equipped to deal with discrimination complaints from trans citizens.

It also rejected calls for full same-sex marriage, previously approved by the House.

Since 2008 same-sex couples may enter into a New Hampshire civil union, as long as both parties are at least 18, not a party to another civil union or a marriage and not closely related by blood to their civil partner.

Civil unions only provide 400 of the 1100 rights and protections that heterosexual marriage offers.

Gay marriage is legal in Connecticut and Massachusetts.

It was legal in California from June 2008 until November, when voters approved Proposition 8, denying gay and lesbian couples the right to marry. Prop 8 is being challenged in the courts.

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