Barrie Gewanter, director of the New York Civil Liberties Union's (NYCLU) Central New York Chapter, said: "In passing this legislation, the Common Council has reaffirmed our city's commitment to respecting the civil rights and basic human dignity of all residents. Nobody should be denied service at a doctor's office or fired from a job because of the way they express their gender. We applaud the Common Council for closing this gap in local anti-discrimination laws across upstate New York."
According to NYCLU, with the passage of this legislation in Syracuse, every major city in New York State has now passed similar nondiscrimination legislation protecting the rights of transgender and gender non-conforming people. However, the New York State Senate is blocking the consideration of the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), which would prohibit such discrimination at the state level. .
On the subject of GENDA, Gewanter said, "The strength of people's civil rights protections shouldn't depend on whether they live in an urban area. It's time for our state legislators to stand up for true equality and fairness by supporting GENDA."
Media Resources: NYCLU 11/19/12; Think Progress 11/19/12
8/31/2015 Chicago Activists Continue Hunger Strike to Save Predominately Black Public High School - Chicago residents have entered the second week of their hunger strike protesting the closure of Dyett High School, in the predominately African-American Bronzeville neighborhood located on the South Side of Chicago.
Parents and community members are calling on the Chicago Board of Education to keep Dyett - the only open-enrollment, neighborhood school in its area - open and accept a community plan to revitalize the school with a focus on science and green technology. . . .
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .