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Press Releases - County Council

Montgomery County Council Passes LGBTQ Bill Of Rights Spearheaded by Councilmember Evan Glass

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 6, 2020

ROCKVILLE, MD—Today, the Council unanimously enacted the LGBTQ Bill of Rights, led by At-Large Councilmember Evan Glass. This law will strengthen Montgomery County’s legal protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer residents by expanding Montgomery County’s anti-discrimination code to include gender expression and HIV status. The LGBTQ Bill of Rights explicitly bans LGBTQ+ discrimination in healthcare facilities, nursing homes and personal care facilities.

Councilmember Evan Glass is the lead sponsor of Bill 28-20, Human Rights and Civil Liberties - Discrimination in Public Accommodations - LGBTQ Bill of Rights. All other Councilmembers are cosponsors.

“Hate and bigotry should not exist in our healthcare system,” Councilmember Evan Glass said. “This legislation will ensure that LGBTQ+ seniors can receive the health and medical attention they need so they can age with dignity and respect.”

The LGBTQ Bill of Rights is the first such law in Maryland and in the region.

Montgomery County’s senior population is projected to constitute 21 percent of county residents by 2040, and with half of all people living with HIV being over the age of 50, the need for protecting access to healthcare is particularly acute for LGBTQ+ seniors.

“Access to safe long-term care is of dire concern for the LGBTQ community,” said Nancy Carr, Associate State Director for Communications at AARP Maryland. “A 2018 AARP study found that many LGBTQ seniors are vulnerable and isolated because they are less likely to have adult children to look out for them. They are also more likely to have lost a significant part of their social network during the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Discrimination at the hands of providers, threatens the very health, financial security, and personal fulfillment of too many 50-plus LGBTQ adults. We are glad to see Montgomery County take the lead on this issue and we hope it propels further action at the state level.”

The Council staff report can be viewed here.

Councilmember Evan Glass was elected to the Montgomery County Council in 2018 and is the first LGBTQ+ member of the Montgomery County Council. He serves on the Transportation and Environment (T&E) Committee and the Health and Human Services (HHS) Committee, where he is the Council’s lead on Homelessness and Vulnerable Communities. Councilmember Glass also serves as the Montgomery County Council’s representative on the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments’ (COG) National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board and the National Association of Counties’ (NACo) Transportation Committee and its Large Urban County Caucus.

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Release ID: 20-392
Media Contact: Valeria Carranza 240-777-7966