Massachusetts Senate President Stan Rosenberg says senators will debate a public accommodations bill next month that would expand protections for transgender people.
The Amherst Democrat said in a speech to Boston business leaders Wednesday that failure to act could have "disastrous" implications for the state's economy. He referenced the outcry over new laws in other states, including a North Carolina law that among other things requires transgender people to use public restrooms corresponding to the sex listed on their birth certificate.
The Massachusetts bill would expand a 2011 law banning discrimination against transgender people in the workplace and in housing by also banning discrimination in restaurants, malls, restrooms and other public accommodations.
Republican Gov. Charlie Baker says he supports the current law but has yet to endorse the proposed changes.