Religious leaders are far too often more eager to oppose than promote civil protection or inclusion in faith for sexual minorities. There are an increasing number now speaking up for lesbian and gay rights - but not usually for the trans community. In Massachusetts, there is an exception (particularly welcome in this (Transgender Faith Action Week), as the Boston Globe reports:
Bishop M. Thomas Shaw of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts and several other clergy yesterday called on Massachusetts lawmakers to pass transgender-rights legislation and asked religious communities to throw their support behind the bill.Shaw said that virtually all transgender people have experienced discrimination or harassment and about one-quarter have been fired from their jobs.“Supporting this legislation, and supporting transgender people in the life of the church and in secular society really has to do with the living out of my baptismal covenant,’’ he said.
The bill would prohibit discrimination in Massachusetts against transgender people in employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and credit, and would expand the hate- crimes statute. Thirteen states and more than 130 cities nationwide have passed similar legislation.(Full report at Boston Globe)