Gregoire OKs transgender hate-crime protection
Attacks against transgender people could be prosecuted as hate crimes under a bill signed into law by Gov. Chris Gregoire.
OLYMPIA — Attacks against transgender people could be prosecuted as hate crimes under a bill signed into law by Gov. Chris Gregoire.
Gregoire signed the measure Wednesday. It takes effect three months after the end of the 2009 legislative session, scheduled to adjourn Sunday.
Under current law, it's a felony to threaten, damage the property of, or physically injure a person because of ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender, disability or sexual orientation.
The hate-crime definition of sexual orientation previously covered gay, straight or bisexual people. Senate Bill 5952 signed by Gregoire on Wednesday adds "gender expression or identity" to the definition, making the law apply to attacks on transgender people.
Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company
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