Legislators call for expanding Michigan’s anti-discrimination law
A group of state legislators are reintroducing a bill aimed at expanding Michigan’s anti-discrimination laws. Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act does not specifically protect against discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Neither does Michigan’s Ethnic Intimidation Law.
Dani Woods says they should. She's the LGBTQ liaison with the Detroit Police Department. Woods trains Detroit officers on terminology, history and case law involving LGBTQ communities.
"No one is asking for preferential treatment," Woods said. "No one is asking for that. The ask, and it’s a shame that we have to ask, is equality".
State Senator Adam Hollier is among those who want to change that. The Detroit Democrat says the proposed legislation is necessary because trans women of color have died in record numbers over the last several years.
"In every space she has to enter, people want to know what her pronouns are," Hollier said. "They want to know what she is and what she isn’t, what she has and what she doesn’t have. And the reason that that’s so important and so impactful is because if she answers wrongly, her life is in danger".
Hollier is submitting the legislation to the Senate and hopes it will pass before the end of the year.