WASHINGTON — In celebration of LGBTQ Pride Month, the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee is lauding the progress won this year in state legislatures across the country. From conversion therapy bans to nondiscrimination protections, Democratic lawmakers have made great progress in improving the lives of LGBTQ Americans.
“We are proud to stand with the LGBTQ community as we celebrate Pride Month and recommit ourselves to the fight for equality,” said Jessica Post, executive director of the DLCC. “We memorialize the contributions of generations of activists and leaders who strove to make this nation a better place for their community. While we’ve seen incredible progress in the last fifty years, the LGBTQ community remains under attack and we still have much work to accomplish. Democrats across the country are fighting for our LGBTQ friends and neighbors as we work to safeguard the rights and dignity of every American.”
Since President Trump’s election, Democrats have flipped more than 400 legislative seats and won eight new majorities. These gains included a record number of openly LGBTQ candidates and saw nearly 100 of them elected to office — paving the way for this year’s progress on LGBTQ rights.
This year’s legislative victories for the LGBTQ community include:
- Legislators in Maine, Colorado, New York, and Massachusetts voted to ban conversion therapy, the dangerous pseudo-scientific method that the American Psychiatric Association has denounced as “harmful and discriminatory.” Minors in these states will no longer be subjected to this cruel and discredited method, which can lead to depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness, and suicide.
- Nevada outlawed the discriminatory gay and trans panic defenses, which deny LGBTQ victims true equality of justice and send the message that crimes are somehow justified. The defenses appeal to irrational fear and hatred of the LGBTQ community and undermine the criminal justice system.
- New York passed the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), which expands the state’s equal protection policies to include gender identity. The new law also updates hate crime statutes to protect victims who are targeted based on their gender identity or expression.
“The progress won this year shows what happens when we elect more Democrats,” Post said. “As we mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, it’s shameful that many LGBTQ American still face legal discrimination every day. Democratic legislators and candidates will not stop fighting until everyone enjoys the equality promised by the Constitution.”