On January 25, 2019, Governor Cuomo signed the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA) into law in New York. GENDA amends existing law to include gender identity or expression as a protected class and prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression in employment, housing, education, credit, and access to public accommodations. An estimated 78,600 transgender adults live in New York State.[i]
GENDA brings New York State’s protections more in line with those available in New York City, which has outlawed discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression since 2002.
On the same day, the Governor Cuomo also signed a bill banning so-called “conversion therapy” for patients under the age of 18. The practice of conversion therapy is condemned by every major medical and mental health organization, including the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Medical Association. Fourteen other states and the District of Columbia currently have laws prohibiting the use of conversion therapy for minors.
The Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act, prohibiting
discrimination on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation, was
signed into law in New York State in 2002.