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Ending employment discrimination based on gender identity

Public opinion polls: 2001 to 2008

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Support for employment protection based on gender identity:

In 2009, The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund prepared a document titled: "Passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act: A toolkit." 1

The Task Force formed a coalition with many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) groups in order to promote the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (2009). The groups include the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund, National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), Pride at Work, the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), Parents Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) and a number of other colleague organizations.

Most of the following poll data come from the Task Force's toolkit

Unfortunately, no polling data appears to be available from states in the deep South, where religious and social conservatives are plentiful and support for an end to employment discrimination based on gender identity is believed to be much lower.

Polling on transgender employment discrimination Issues:

bullet 2001: North Carolina: When 2,000 North Carolinians were asked whether discrimination based on gender identity in public employment should be legal, 68 percent responded no, 16.4 percent responded yes, and 15.6 percent responded not sure. When the same question was asked about private employment, 61 percent responded no, 24 percent responded yes, and 15 percent responded not sure. (The poll was conducted by the Lucas organization and released by Equality NC Project).
bullet 2002: National: 61% of American adults believe that the country needs laws to protect transgender people from discrimination (2002 poll conducted by Lake, Snell, Perry, & Associates for the Human Rights Campaign).
bullet 2005: Washington state: 71% of voters across demographic groups support ensuring equal rights for LGBT people, while only 22 percent are opposed (2005; poll conducted by Decision Research, released by Equal Rights Washington).

bullet 2005: New Jersey: In 2005, a Zogby poll indicated that 70% of likely voters in New Jersey favored a state bill that would expand the state's law against discrimination to include gender identity and expression, while only 19% opposed it (released by Garden State Equality).
bullet 2006: Ohio: 60% of Ohio registered voters believe that laws should be passed banning discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations on both sexual orientation and gender identity or expression (2006 Glengariff Poll commissioned by Equality Ohio Education Fund).
bullet 2007: National: 72% of American adults support employment protection for transgender persons (2007; poll conducted by the Peter D. Hart Reseach Associates, released by Human Rights Campaign). Unfortunately, the question was highly biased in favor of support for transsexuals. Subjects were asked if they agreed with the statement: "Fairness is a basic American value and employment decisions should be based solely on qualifications and job performance, including for transgender people." This makes the result almost meaningless, in our opinion. 2

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bullet 2007: Oregon: When likely voters were asked whether they support state nondiscrimination laws that include sexual orientation and gender identity, 62% responded that they favor the law, while 28% do not favor it, and 10% were uncertain or didn't respond. (Poll released by Basic Rights Oregon).
bullet 2007: Pennsylvania: 71% of Pennsylvania voters support state legislation prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and
gender identity in employment, housing and public accommodations. 86% responded that there should be workplace equality for LGBT people (Poll conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research, released by Equality Advocates Pennsylvania).
bullet 2008: New York: 78% of New Yorkers support a statewide bill that would provide protection against discrimination based on gender identity or expression, while only 13% do not. (Poll conducted by the Global Strategy Group andreleased by Empire State Pride Agenda).


See also public opinion polls on the prevention
of employment discrimination against gays and lesbians

References used in the above essay:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. "Passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act: A toolkit," National Gay and Lesbian Task force Action Fund, Page 7, (2009), at: This is a PDF file.
  2. "Public opinion on workplace protections based on gender identity," Human Rights Campaign, undated, at:

Site navigation:

Home > "Hot" conflicts > Homosexuality > Employment > here

The toolkit is copyright © 2009 by The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund. The Fund "... encourages, and grants permission to, reproduce and distribute their guide 1 in whole or in part, provided that it is done so with attribution."

Originally posted: 2009-AUG-08
Latest update: 2011-APR-21

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