Equality and Fairness Must Prevail in Illinois

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April 5, 2016
Jim Bennett

Today, the Illinois General Assembly’s Human Services Committee advanced House Bill 6073, a bill that would move Illinois forward as a welcoming place for all people. Illinois House Bill 6073 helps transgender and intersex people get accurate birth certificates. The bill will be scheduled for a full House vote very soon.

Our legal team, headed by Christopher Clark, has been working closely with Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago) and many local advocates to craft a bill that seeks to not only facilitate the process of amending a birth certificate for transgender and intersex Illinoisans, but that is more reflective of the diversity of experiences within the community.

Some of the features of HB 6073 include elimination of the requirement for surgery so that individuals and their healthcare providers can make decisions about the course of treatment that is right for them. The bill also adds language that includes intersex people, who previously had not been recognized.

These changes make the process for amending an individual’s sex designation consistent with the federal process for amending important identification documents such as Social Security cards. This means that transgender and intersex people can have accurate identity documents across the board.

Illinois however, is not immune to the bad motives of some lawmakers who want to unfairly target people who are transgender. Another bill, Illinois House Bill 4474, which is designed to hurt transgender students, was referred to a subcommittee. This damaging bill would prevent transgender students from accessing the facilities consistent with their gender identity and force them into facilities where they do not feel comfortable or safe. 

Lambda Legal will continue to work tirelessly to defeat bills that hurt our community and do everything we can to help advance the proposals that make our cities, states and country a better place for all LGBT people and people living with HIV.