Transgender Rights on Long Island

March & Rally 1

 

Courtesy of Juli Grey-Owens

While many states include protections for the transgender community in their anti-discrimination laws, ostensibly progressive New York is not one of them. Many counties and towns have local laws but in Nassau County you can lose your job or be denied housing because of your gender identity. This week, Legislator Judy Jacobs (D-16) discusses new municipal bills being pushed in Nassau County and the Town of North Hempstead to extend protections to trans identifying people. Juli Grey-Owens, executive director of the Long Island Transgender Advocacy Coalition (LITAC) gives a frank and extensive interviews about the indignities trans people have faced while fighting for anti-discrimination protections from the state.

 New Local Bills on the Island

Legislator Judy Jacobs (D-16) of Woodbury has been championing more inclusive anti-discrimination language ever since it was brought to her attention that the law they passed was not all inclusive. Activists and a handful of democratic legislators have been fighting tirelessly to push through legislation that prevents discrimination based on gender identity but their efforts have been fruitless. While Suffolk County and NYC have anti-discrimination laws that include trans people, the republican controlled Nassau has been at an impasse.

The Battle in Albany

Juli Grey-Owens, executive director of Long Island Transgender Advocacy Coalition is one of the activists who has taken on the tireless often thankless job of fighting for civil rights for trans people on Long Island and at the state level. Every time Nassau Legislators converge she is there arguing her case with her fellow advocates. Grey-Owens discusses both the specifics of what she is up against in Albany and with the Nassau legislature and also gives a frank and personal account of fighting to be who you are in a county that will rob you of your job because of it.