Before the end of the day, I just want to cycle back to something that happened just before the 4th of July break; Phil Murphy’s signing of three bills that recognize the rights of transgender people. Senate Bill No. 478 (The Babs Siperstein Law) will allow for the issuance of amended birth certificates for people who have undergone a change in gender, S493 will allow gender identity to be reflected on death certificates, and S705 will establish a Transgender Equality Task Force. We this, we leap ahead in the simple act of people determining their lives for themselves. And it was a huge day for my friend Babs Siperstein. That’s Babs in this little video produced by the Governor’s office (a statement from his office is below, too). Babs, as you know, was the first trans person ever to serve on the DNC; in fact till Tom Perez shuffled the deck a few months ago and she lost her seat, she was on the DNC’s executive committee. She’s a much better Dem than I am, we don’t always agree, but she’s always been my go-to on many issues, not only on LGBTQ rights, but also in many long convos about the Party (most recently over watermelon and bagels). Congratulations, Babs. And congratulations to all of us. This makes New Jersey a better state.
Babs Siperstein is a lifelong New Jerseyan, a veteran, a businesswoman, an activist, and the first openly transgender member of the DNC.
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) July 3, 2018
Statement from Gov. Murphy’s office:
“Today is an important day for New Jersey as we continue to strive toward equality for all of our residents, regardless of sex or gender expression,” said Governor Murphy. “Allowing vital records to match gender identity is an important step forward that will allow transgender individuals to control the disclosure of their transgender status. And by creating a Transgender Equality Task Force, New Jersey can ensure that all residents receive the protections they deserve. New Jersey will continue to stand with our LGBTQ residents in the continued pursuit of similar rights nationwide.”
“I am immensely proud of Governor Murphy for not only standing with our community, but also seeing that equality reaches everyone in New Jersey. Transgender people have long stood in solidarity with LGB people and here at Garden State Equality we make sure nobody is left behind,” said Christian Fuscarino, Executive Director of Garden State Equality.
S478 is designated as the Babs Siperstein Law, recognizing transgender advocate Babs Siperstein for her tireless advocacy efforts related to protecting transgender individuals and expanding rights for LGBTQ New Jerseyans.
S478 was sponsored by Senator Joe Vitale, Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, Assemblywoman Valerie Huttle, Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker, and Assemblyman Nick Chiaravalloti.
S493 was sponsored by Senator Vitale, Senator Nia Gill, Assemblywoman Huttle, Assemblyman Tim Eustace, Assemblyman Nancy Pinkin, Assemblywoman Mila Jasey.
S705 was sponsored by Senator Teresa Ruiz, Senator Vitale, Assemblywoman Huttle, Assemblyman Eustace, Assemblywoman Pinkin, and Assemblywoman Jasey.