Delaware’s Attorney General Beau Biden is taking a lead role in trying to secure legal protections for the transgender people in his state where gay marriage recently became legal.
The son of US Vice President Joe Biden says in a new video that he has a transgender friend who ‘has spoken to me about her fear of living without basic legal protections.’
Biden is supporting providing protections from violence and discrimination based on gender identity and expression under Delaware law. He is working with the state’s General Assembly to pass legislation – introduced last week – that will provide such protections.
People in Delaware and more than 30 other US states can be fired from their jobs, denied housing, and turned away from service at restaurants and hotels because of their gender identity.
‘All Delawareans should be treated fairly and equally – none of our citizens should be subject to violence based on their gender identity or expression,’ Biden said. ‘All of us should have the same opportunities to live, to work, to eat in a restaurant without the fear that we will be refused thse most fundamental right.’
The bill is similar to legislation already passed in 16 other states and has the support of Governor Jack Markell.
It includes a provision stating that employers can require workers to have reasonable appearance, grooming and dress standards ‘except that an employer shall allow an employee to appear, groom and dress consistent with the employee’s gender identity.’
The bill also would require educational institutions to provide ‘reasonable accommodations’ for transgender people to dormitories, fraternities, sororities, and other housing.