The COVID-19 pandemic has wrought havoc on our communities, heightening threats to health care, housing, economic, and restorative justice, while also exacerbating a number of longstanding disparities for LGBTQ New Yorkers who live at the intersection of multiple marginalized identities—particularly Black people, Indigenous people, and People of color (BIPOC). By pushing lawmakers to continue their leadership and pass progressive bills, New York State can meet the challenges and reduce the outsized harm caused by the COVID-19 crisis.
That’s why we need your support for:
- The Hate Crimes Analysis and Review Act (S00070/A02230) would be the first law to standardize the practice of hate crimes reporting across New York State. Our state has strong hate crimes penalties already, but hate crime rates are only increasing—so we need to re-envision how we respond to these crimes. As a first step, to achieve more transparency around how existing hate crimes laws are impacting our communities, HCARA would require New York State to collect and report data on the demographics (including sexual orientation, gender identity, racial and ethnic identity) of alleged perpetrators and victims of hate crimes. As long as this information remains uncollected, our state loses a critical opportunity to effectively protect those who are at risk.
- The Gender Recognition Act (S04402) would reduce the unnecessary barriers and expenses that prevent people from updating New York State-issued birth certificates and drivers’ licenses, and making legal name changes that further affirm their identities and keep them safe.
- The Long Term Care Facility Residents’ Bill of Rights (S00085) would ensure that LGBTQ elders in long-term care facilities are protected from discrimination by requiring staff who interact with residents to be trained on the best practices for caring for LGBTQ older people.
Equity and justice are core values that require consistent and intentional protection. As we celebrate important milestones for our community, we are also aware that this moment requires continuous and bold action, ensuring New York State goes further in its commitment to protect the most marginalized people in our communities.
This petition was created by The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center (The Center) and will be delivered to New York State legislators. For more information about The Center’s RiseOut advocacy initiative, and to learn how you can get involved, visit gaycenter.org/advocacy.