As state and city governments across the country debate how much - or how little - they want to protect their transgender and gender non-conforming citizens, New Yorkers can rest assured that city law has their back in multiple ways.
The New York City Human Rights Law protects against discrimination based on gender identity and expression. The New York City Commission on Human Rights, which enforces the law, offers extensive guidance on the types of practices that are considered discriminatory under the law in the areas of employment, housing and public accommodation.
The guidance reveals that New York City recognizes a wide range of behaviors as illegal discrimination. Here are six examples of discrimination based on gender identity and expression that the law prohibits:
- Intentionally and repeatedly refusing to use someone's chosen name and pronouns.
- Refusing to let someone use the restroom that corresponds with their gender.
- Requiring different work uniforms, dress codes or grooming standards based on sex or gender
- Providing employee benefits unequally depending on gender
- Assaulting, threatening or otherwise harassing someone based on their gender expression
- Retaliating against someone who reports discrimination
If you believe someone has discriminated against you as an employee, a customer or a tenant, it's important to remember that you are protected under city law - and in many cases under state and federal law as well. An attorney can help you understand your options for reporting what happened and pursing legal action.