VIRGINIA’S GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Every year, Equality Virginia monitors all legislation introduced to the Virginia General Assembly and advocates on behalf of Virginia’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community. We work to introduce and support pro-equality legislation and to oppose bills that move us backward.

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END DISCRIMINATION

Prohibited discrimination: public accommodations, employment, credit, and housing – SB 868 (Ebbin): A comprehensive nondiscrimination policy that prohibits discrimination in public accommodations and employment on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

SB 868 Status: Passed House (54-Y 46-N); House substitute agreed to by Senate (27-Y 13-N)

Prohibited discrimination; public accommodations, employment, credit, and housing: causes of action; sexual orientation and gender identity – HB 1663 (Sickles): A comprehensive nondiscrimination policy that creates explicit causes of action for unlawful discrimination in public accommodations and employment in the Virginia Human Rights Act. EV SUPPORTS

HB 1663 Status: Reported from Finance and Appropriations (14-Y 1-N)

Prohibited discrimination; sexual orientation and gender identity – HB 1049 (Levine) and all other nondiscrimination bills: Prohibits discrimination in employment, public accommodation, public contracting, apprenticeship programs, housing, banking, and insurance on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The bill contains technical amendments. EV SUPPORTS

HB 1049 Status: Passed Senate with substitute (24-Y 14-N)

Local human rights ordinances; sexual orientation and gender identity – HB 696 (Roem): Provides that localities may prohibit discrimination in housing, employment, public accommodations, credit, and education on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

HB 696 Status: Passed Senate (34-Y 5-N)

BUILD SAFE COMMUNITIES

Hate crimes; gender, disability, gender identity, or sexual orientation, penalty – HB 618 (Plum): Adds gender, gender identity, disability, and sexual orientation to categories of hate crimes, as well as increasing the penalty of an offense against victims chosen based on gender, gender identity, disability, and sexual orientation. EV SUPPORTS

HB 618 Status: Passed Senate with substitute (24-Y 16-N); House adoption (54-Y 43-N)

Department of State Police; reporting hate crimes – HB 276 (Sullivan): Includes within the definition of a “hate crime” a criminal act committed against a person because of sexual orientation or gender identification, and requires the reporting of the commission of such crime to the State Police. EV SUPPORTS

HB 276 Status: Passed Senate with substitute (27-Y 13-N); House adoption (60-Y 39-N)

Infected sexual battery – HB 864 (Levine): Provides that, in order for a person to be convicted of infected sexual battery,  (i) knew that he was infected at the time of the offense with HIV, syphilis, or hepatitis B and (ii) knew that his infection was currently detectable and transmittable, and committed the offense without using a prophylactic barrier, including a condom or dental dam. EV IS MONITORING

HB 864 Status: Continued to 2021 in Courts of Justice by voice vote

PROTECT LGBTQ YOUTH

Public elementary and secondary school; treatment of transgender students, policies – SB 161 (Boysko) and HB 145 (Simon): Requires the Department of Education to develop and make available to each school board model policies regarding the treatment of transgender students in primary and secondary schools no later than December 31, 2020. EV SUPPORTS

SB 161 Status: House passage (58-Y 40-N)

HB 145 Status: Passed Senate with amendments (22-Y 18-N); House adoption (60-Y 39-N)

Conversion therapy; prohibited by certain health care providers – SB 245 (Surovell) and HB 386 (Hope): Prohibits any healthcare provider or person who preforms counseling as any part of his profession licensed by the Department of Health Professions from engaging in conversion therapy with any person under 18 years of age. EV SUPPORTS

SB 245 Status: House passage (62-Y 35-N)

HB 386 Status: Passed Senate (22-Y 8-N)

Health regulatory boards; conversion therapy – HB 966 (Walker): EV OPPOSES

HB 966 Status: Subcommittee recommends passing by indefinitely (4-Y 2-N)

UPDATE VIRGINIA’S LAWS TO REFLECT MARRIAGE EQUALITY

Same-sex marriages; civil unions – SB 17 (Ebbin) and HB 1490 (Guy): Repeals statutory prohibitions on same-sex marriages and civil unions or other arrangements between persons of the same sex claiming to bestow privileges and obligations of marriage, as affirmed by Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___ (June 26, 2015). EV SUPPORTS

SB 17 Status: House passage (62-Y 38-N)

HB 1490 Status: Passed Senate (28-Y 12-N)

Constitutional amendment marriage; (first reference) – SJ 3 (Ebbin), SJ 7 (Edwards), HJ 113 (Sickles): Proposes the repeal of the constitutional amendment dealing with marriage that was approved by referendum at the November 2006 election. EV SUPPORTS

SJ 3 Status: Continued to 2021 in Privileges and Elections (15-Y 0-N)

SJ 7 Status: Continued to 2021 in Privileges and Elections (15-Y 0-N)

HJ 113 Status: Continued to 2021 in Committee on Rules by voice vote

OTHER LEGISLATION

Certificate of birth; new certificate issued to show change of sex – SB 657 (Boysko) and HB 1041 (Simon): The State Registrar, upon the request of a person in accordance with requirements of the Board of Health, shall issue a new certificate of birth to show a change of sex of a person, as well as a change of name if the person submits a court order that changed their name. EV SUPPORTS

SB 657 Status: House Passage (52-Y 45-N)

HB 1041 Status: Passed Senate with substitute (23-Y 17-N)

Sex designation; DMV – SB 246 (Surovell): Requires the Department of Motor Vehicles to offer any applicant the option to mark “X” when identifying the applicant’s sex, except when otherwise required by federal law. EV SUPPORTS

SB 246 Status: House passage (57-Y 43-N)

Voter identification; repeal of photo identification requirements – HB 19 (Lindsey): Removes the requirement that voters show a form of identification containing a photograph in order to be allowed to vote. EV SUPPORTS

HB 19 Status: Senate requested conference committee 

Child-placing agencies; conscience clause, discrimination – HB 1051 (Levine): Repeals provisions that allowed child-placing agencies to refuse service to perform, assist with, counsel, recommend, consent to, refer, or participate in any child placements when the proposed placement would violate the agency’s written religious or moral convictions or policies. Also prohibits the Department of Social Services from providing funds to any child agency that, in making decisions regarding the placement of a child, discriminates on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, or status as a veteran. EV SUPPORTS

HB 1051 Status: Left in Health, Welfare, and Institutions 

Health insurance; nondiscrimination, gender identity or transgender status – HB 1429 (Roem): Prohibits a health carrier from denying or limiting coverage or imposing additional cost sharing or other limitations or restrictions on coverage to a transgender individual on the basis that the individual’s sex assigned at birth, gender identity, or gender otherwise recorded is different from the one to which such health services are ordinarily or exclusively available. In addition, prohibits health carries from discriminating on the basis of gender identity or being a transgender individual. EV SUPPORTS

HB 1429 Status: Reported from Senate’s Committee on Commerce and Labor (12-Y 2-N)

Adoption by stepparent; background check – HB 371 (Bell) and HB 1662 (Sickles): Repeals the July 1, 2020, sunset on provisions that require a circuit court, when determining whether an investigation by the director of the local department of social services should be required before a final order is entered to approve as an adoptive parent the spouse of a child’s birth or adoptive parent, to consider the results of a national criminal history background check conducted on the prospective adoptive parent. EV OPPOSES

HB 371 Status: VOTE: DEFEATED (45-Y 52-N)

HB 1662 Status: Stricken from docket by Health, Welfare and Institutions (22-Y 0-N)

Surrogacy contracts; provisions requiring abortion or selective reduction unenforceable – SB 920 (Peake): Provides that any provision of a surrogacy contract requiring or prohibiting an abortion or selective reduction is against the public policy of the Commonwealth and is void and unenforceable. EV OPPOSES

SB 920 Status: Left in Courts of Justice


View the 2017, 2018 & 2019 General Assembly action!

VIRGINIA’S GENERAL ASSEMBLY 2019

END DISCRIMINATION

Public employment; prohibits discrimination on basis of sexual orientation or gender identity – SB 998 (Ebbin) and HB 2067 (J., Bell): Prohibits discrimination in state and local government public employment based on sexual orientation or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

SB 998 Status: Passed Senate (28-Y 12-N); Referred to House Committee on Rules

HB 2067 Status: Left in House Committee on General Laws (defeated)

Fair Housing Law; unlawful discriminatory housing practices, sexual orientation – SB 1109 (McClellan), SB 1232 (Ebbin), HB 2677 (Robinson) and HB 1823 (Convirs-Fowler): Adds discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity as an unlawful discriminatory housing practice. The bill defines “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” EV SUPPORTS

SB 1109 Status: Passed Senate (31-Y 9-N); Referred to House Committee on Rules

SB 1232 Status: Incorporated into Sen. McClellan’s SB 1109

                HB 2677 Status: Left in House Committee on General Laws (defeated)

HB 1823 Status: Stricken from docket by Rules Committee at the request of the Delegate

Discrimination; sexual orientation and gender identity –  HB 2421 (Levine): Prohibits discrimination in employment, public accommodation, public contracting, apprenticeship programs, housing, banking, and insurance on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

                HB 2421 Status: Left in House Committee on General Laws (defeated)

Policies against workplace harassment; legislative branch – HB 2083 (Watts): Prohibits workplace harassment on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation.  EV SUPPORTS

              HB 2083 Status: Left in House Committee on Rules (defeated)

Virginia LotteryHB 2210 (Simon): Includes sexual orientation and gender identity to list of protected classes that cannot be discriminated against when awarding contracts. EV SUPPORTS

              HB 2210 Status: Tabled (defeated) in Rules (14-Y 2-N) 

Virginia Human Rights Act – HB 2369 (Herring): The bill includes sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected classes from reproductive health discrimination. EV SUPPORTS

             HB 2369 Status: Left in House Committee on Rules (defeated)

Reproductive Health Services – HB 2378 (Price): The bill adds sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected classes that cannot be discriminated against or denied benefits for reproductive health services. EV SUPPORTS

             HB 2378 Status: Failed to report (defeated) in Commerce and Labor (9-Y 11-N)

Reproductive health services; health benefit plans to cover costs of specified health care services – SB 1132 (Locke): The bill adds sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected classes that cannot be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination in the coverage or payment for reproductive health services by any carrier or health plan. EV SUPPORTS

             SB 1132 Status: Failed to report (defeated) in Commerce and Labor (4-Y 10-N) 

BUILD SAFE COMMUNITIES

Hate crimes; gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability; penalty – SB 1375 (Favola) and HB 2472 (Plum): Adds gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense. The bill also adds these categories of victims to the categories of hate crimes that are to be reported to the central repository of information regarding hate crimes maintained by the Virginia State Police. EV SUPPORTS

                 SB 1375 Status: Failed to report (defeated) in Courts of Justice (6-Y 8-N to report)

                HB 2472 Status: Subcommittee recommends passing by indefinitely (defeated) (5-Y 3-N)

Hate crimes; reporting to State Police – HB 1976 (Sullivan): Includes within the definition of “hate crime” a criminal act committed against a person because of sexual orientation or gender identification and requires the reporting of the commission of such crime to the State Police. EV SUPPORTS

               HB 1976 Status: Subcommittee recommends passing by indefinitely (defeated) (5-Y 3-N)

Hate Crimes – HB 1991 (Price): Includes within the definition of “domestic terrorism” an act of violence committed against a person on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

                HB 1991 Status: Left in House Committee on Courts of Justice (defeated)

Department of State Police; reporting hate crimes – HB 2579 (Kory): Includes sexual orientation within the definition of “hate crime” of a criminal act committed against a person. EV SUPPORTS

               HB 2579 Status: Subcommittee recommends passing by indefinitely (defeated) (5-Y 3-N)

Apprenticeship program; discrimination – HB 2603 (Ward): Prohibits a sponsor of a registered apprenticeship program from discriminating against a apprentice or applicant for apprenticeship on the basis of sexual orientation among other classes. EV SUPPORTS WITH AMENDED LANGUAGE

              HB 2603 Status: Subcommittee failed to recommend reporting (3-Y 5-N)

Hate crimes; gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation – HB 2684 (Turpin): Adds gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense.

              HB 2684 Status:Subcommittee recommends laying on the table (defeated) (8-Y 0-N)

UPDATE VIRGINIA’S LAWS TO REFLECT MARRIAGE EQUALITY

Same-sex marriages; civil unions –  SB 1007 (Ebbin), & SB 1306 (Edwards): Repeals the statutory prohibitions on same-sex marriages and civil unions or other arrangements between persons of the same sex purporting to bestow the privileges and obligations of marriage. These prohibitions are no longer valid due to the United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___ (June 26, 2015). Read More HereEV SUPPORTS

SB 1007 Status: Failed to report (defeated) in Courts of Justice (7-Y 8-N)

SB 1306 Status: Incorporated by Courts of Justice into Sen. Ebbin’s 1007

Constitutional amendment (first resolution); marriage – SJ 1 (Ebbin), SJ 251 (Ebbin), & SJ 279 (Edwards): Proposes the repeal of the constitutional amendment dealing with marriage that was approved by referendum at the November 2006 election. Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

        SJ 1 Status: Left in Senate Committee on Privileges & Elections (defeated)

                SJ 251 Status: Failed to report (defeated) in Privileges and Elections (7-Y 7-N)

                SJ 279 Status: Incorporated by Privileges & Elections into Sen. Ebbin’s SJ 251

Same-sex marriage; gender-neutral terms – HB 1701 (Simon): Repeals the statutory prohibitions on same-sex marriages and civil unions or other arrangements between persons of the same sex purporting to bestow the privileges and obligations of marriage. These prohibitions are no longer valid due to the United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges. The bill also makes conforming changes to various laws involving married individuals and their rights stemming from marriage and makes the laws addressing the property rights of married women applicable to all spouses, removing any sex-based classifications. EV SUPPORTS

HB 1701 Status: Left in House Committee on Courts of Justice (defeated)

Assisted conception. – HB 1979 (Sullivan): Amends the assisted conception statute to provide gender-neutral terminology. The bill allows an unmarried individual to be an intended parent, paralleling the ability of an unmarried individual to adopt under the adoption statutes. The bill further allows for the use of an embryo owned by an intended parent in a surrogacy arrangement. EV SUPPORTS

               HB 1979 Status: Passed Senate (28-Y 12-N) and adopted by House (63-Y 36-N)

OTHER LEGISLATION

Birth Certificates – SB 1643 (Boysko): Eliminates the requirement that a person provide a certified copy of an order of a court of competent jurisdiction indicating that his sex has been change by medical procedure for amendment of a birth certificate to reflect a change of sex. EV SUPPORTS

               SB 1643 Status: Passed by indefinitely (defeated) in Education and Health (9-N 6-Y)

Health insurance; nondiscrimination; gender identity or transgender status. – SB 1287 (Barker) & HB 1864 (Rodman): Prohibits a health carrier from denying or limiting coverage or imposing additional cost sharing or other limitations or restrictions on coverage under a health benefit plan for health care services that are ordinarily or exclusively available to covered individuals of one sex to a transgender individual based on the fact that the individual’s sex assigned at birth, gender identity, or gender otherwise recorded is different from the one to which such health services are ordinarily or exclusively available. EV SUPPORTS

                SB 1287 Status: Stricken at request of Patron in Commerce and Labor (13-Y 1-N) 

               HB 1864 Status: Subcommittee recommends striking from docket (7-Y 0-N)

Health regulatory boards; conversion therapy. – SB 1778 (Newman): Directs the Board of Counseling, the Board of Medicine, the Board of Nursing, the Board of Psychology, and the Board of Social Work to each promulgate regulations prohibiting the use of electroshock therapy, aversion therapy, or other physical treatments in the practice of conversion therapy with any person under 18 years of age. EV OPPOSES

                  SB 1778 Status: Left in Senate Education and Health (defeated)

Health regulatory boards; conversion therapy. – SB 1773 (Dunnavant): Directs the Board of Counseling, the Board of Medicine, the Board of Nursing, the Board of Psychology, and the Board of Social Work to each promulgate regulations or guidance documents defining conversion therapy and the unprofessional conduct in the practice of conversion therapy with any person under 18 years of age. EV SUPPORTS

                SB 1773 Status: Passed by indefinitely (defeated) in Education and Health (13-Y 1-N)

Public schools; counseling services; parental rights. – HB 2623 (Ransone): Prohibits a student from being required to receive personal or social counseling services without written parental consent. EV IS MONITORING

                HB 2623 Status: Stricken at the request of the patron in Senate Education and health (15-Y 0-N)

Assisted conception; parentage presumption. – SB 1544 (Surovell): Makes the relevant law regarding children born as a result of assisted conception applicable to both same-sex and opposite-sex married couples. The bill also provides that a person is presumed to be the parent of a child if such person is married to the mother at the time of the child’s birth or was married to the mother within 300 days of the child’s birth. EV SUPPORTS

                SB 1544 Status:Failed to report (defeated) in Courts of Justice (7-Y 8-N)

Commending the Matthew Shepard Foundation – HJ 622 (Sickles). EV SUPPORTS

               HJ 622 Status: Agreed to in House and referred to in Senate Committee on Rules

Celebrating the life of Matthew Wayne Shepard – HJ 623 (Sickles). EV SUPPORTS

              HJ 623 Status: Agreed to in House and referred to in Senate Committee on Rules

Restrictive housing; data collection and reporting, report – SB 1085 (Marsden): Includes sexual orientation and gender identity in the list of requested statistical information to be reported annually from the Department of Corrections to the General Assembly and Governor regarding restrictive housing. EV SUPPORTS

                SB 1085 Status: Incorporated by Rehabilitation and Social Services into Sen. Saslaw’s SB 1776

Solitary confinement; data collection and reporting, Department of Corrections to submit report. – SB 1140 (Favola) and  HB 1642 (Hope): Includes sexual orientation and gender identity in requested data to be reported for each state correctional facility annually to the General Assembly and Governor. EV SUPPORTS

                SB 1140 Status: Incorporated by Rehabilitation & Social Services into Sen. Marsden’s SB 1085

                HB 1642 Status: Read third time and passed House floor in block vote (99-Y 0-N)

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2018 General Assembly Recap

END DISCRIMINATION

Public employment; prohibits discrimination on basis of sexual orientation or gender identity – SB 202 (Ebbin): Prohibits discrimination in state and local government public employment based on sexual orientation or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Passed in full Senate (29Y – 10N); Passed by (killed) in the House General Laws Subcommittee (5Y – 2N)

Fair Housing Law; unlawful discriminatory housing practices, sexual orientation, etc – SB 423 (Wexton), HB 1547 (Simon)Adds discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity as an unlawful discriminatory housing practice. The bill defines “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” EV SUPPORTS

SB 423 status: Passed in full Senate (29Y – 10N). Passed by (killed) in the House General Laws Subcommittee (5Y – 2N)

HB 1547 Status: Passed by (killed) in the House General Laws Subcommittee (5Y – 2N)

Discrimination – HB 401 (Levine): Prohibits discrimination in employment, public accommodation, public contracting, apprenticeship programs, housing, banking, and insurance on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Passed by (killed) in the House General Laws Subcommittee (5Y – 2N)

Transportation network company; discrimination – HB 1013 (Simon): Requires transportation network companies to adopt and enforce a policy of nondiscrimination on the basis of a passenger’s race, color, national origin, religious belief or affiliation, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Left in Committee by House Leadership

Policies against workplace harassment; legislative branch – HB 1053 (Watts): Requires each legislative branch agency to adopt and implement the Commonwealth Workplace Harassment Policy (CWHP) established by the Department of Human Resources Management (DHRM). EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Committee on Rules (11Y – 3N).

Virginia Equal Pay Act – HB 1089 (Boysko): Creates the Virginia Equal Pay Act (the Act), which prohibits private employers from discriminating between employees based on sexual orientation in the payment of wages or other compensation for substantially similar work. EV SUPPORTS WITH AMENDED LANGUAGE

Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Commerce and Labor Subcommittee  (5Y – 3N).

BUILD SAFE COMMUNITIES

Conversion therapy prohibited / Sexual orientation change efforts, prohibited as training for certain health care providers, etc. – SB 245 (Surovell), HB 363 (Hope): Prohibits any health care provider or person who performs counseling as part of his training for any profession licensed by a regulatory board of the Department of Health Professions from engaging in conversion therapy with any persons under 18 years of age. EV SUPPORTS

SB 245 Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Education and Health (8Y – 7N)

HB 363 Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Health, Welfare, & Institutions (4Y – 2N)

Hate crimes; gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability; penalty – SB 112 (Favola): Adds disability, gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated in Courts of Justice Committee (6 Y – 9 N)

Hate crimes; reporting to State Police – HB 32 (Sullivan): Includes within the definition of “hate crime” a criminal act committed against a person because of sexual orientation or gender identification and requires the reporting of the commission of such crime to the State Police. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated in Courts of Justice Subcommittee (4Y – 3N)

Hate crimes; criminal acts against persons because of gender, etc. – HB 718 (Plum): Hate crimes; gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability; penalty. Adds disability, gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense. The bill also adds disability, gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation status to the categories of hate crimes that are to be reported to the central repository of information regarding hate crimes maintained by the Virginia State Police. The bill also provides that a person who is subjected to acts of vandalism to his real or personal property, where such vandalism is motived by disability, gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation, may bring a civil action to recover his damages. The bill also provides that no provider or user of an interactive computer service on the Internet shall be liable for any action voluntarily taken by it in good faith to restrict access to material that the provider or user considers to be intended to incite hatred on the basis of disability, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation

Defeated in Courts of Justice Subcommittee (4Y – 3N)

Hate crimes; gender, sexual orientation, or gender identity; penalty HB 266 (Turpin): Adds gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense. The bill also adds these categories of victims to the categories of hate crimes that are to be reported to the central repository of information regarding hate crimes maintained by the Virginia State Police. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated in Courts of Justice Subcommittee (5Y – 3N)

Study: Department of Education; bullying and suicide prevention among LGBTQ and other youth; report HJ 73 (Carr): Requests that the Department of Education recommend strategies, policies, and programs that can be used to decrease and prevent bullying, harassment, discrimination, and intimidation of LGBTQ and other youth, and the rate of suicide resulting therefrom, in the Commonwealth’s public schools. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated in Rules Subcommittee (4Y – 3N)

Virginia State Crime Commission; hate crimes; report – HJ 85 (Plum): Directs the Virginia State Crime Commission to study the prevalence of hate crimes in the Commonwealth. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated in Rules Subcommittee (4Y – 3N)

UPDATE VIRGINIA’S LAWS TO REFLECT MARRIAGE EQUALITY

Same-sex marriages; civil unions –  SB 3 (Ebbin), HB 75 (Simon): Repeals existing unconstitutional law banning same-sex marriages and civil unions. Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

SB 3 Status: Continued to 2019 in Courts of Justice (8Y – 7N)

HB 75 Status: Left in Committee by House Leadership

Constitutional amendment (first resolution); marriage – SJ 1 (Ebbin), HJ 7 (Kory): Proposes the repeal of the constitutional amendment dealing with marriage that was approved by referendum at the November 2006 election. Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

SJ 1 Status: The amendment was carried over to 2019 in Privileges and Elections (14-Y 0-N).

HJ 7 Status: Left in Committee by House Leadership

Same-sex marriage; gender-neutral terms – SB 603 (Ebbin): Repeals the statutory prohibitions on same-sex marriages and civil unions or other arrangements between persons of the same sex purporting to bestow the privileges and obligations of marriage. These prohibitions are no longer valid due to the United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges. The bill also makes conforming changes to various laws involving married individuals and their rights stemming from marriage and makes the laws addressing the property rights of married women applicable to all spouses, removing any sex-based classifications. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Continued to 2019 in Courts of Justice (8Y – 7N)

OTHER LEGISLATION

Birth Certificates – HB 407 (Boysko): Eliminates the requirement that a person provide a certified copy of an order of a court of competent jurisdiction indicating that his sex has been change by medical procedure for amendment of a birth certificate to reflect a change of sex. Read more hereEV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Health, Welfare, & Institutions (4Y – 2N)

Health insurance; nondiscrimination; gender identity or transgender status – HB 1466 (Rodman): Prohibits a health carrier from denying or limiting coverage or imposing restrictions on coverage for health care services based on gender identity or transgender status. Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Passed by indefinitely (killed) in subcommittee (5Y – 3N)

State employee health plan; coverage for gender transition services – HB 1267 (Sickles): Requires the state employee health plan to provide coverage for gender transition services. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Left in Committee by House Leadership

Reproductive health services – HB 21 (Kory): Requires health benefit plans to cover the costs of specified health care services, drugs, devices, products, and procedures related to reproductive health. EV IS MONITORING

Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Commerce and Labor (5Y – 3N)

Female genital mutilation; criminal penalty – SB 47 (Black), HB 95 (Miyares): Increases the penalty for female circumcision, excision, or infibulation from a misdemeanor to a felony. EV IS MONITORING

SB 47 Status: Passed out of Committee (14Y – 0N)

HB95 Status: Left in Committee by House Leadership

Affirming the Commonwealth’s commitment to diversity and safeguarding the civil rights and dignity – HJ 92 (Lopez): Affirms the state’s commitment to diversity and safeguarding the civil rights and dignity of all Virginians, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Left in Committee by House Leadership

Health insurance; nondiscrimination; gender identity or transgender status. – HB 1466 (Rodman): Prohibits a health carrier from denying or limiting coverage or imposing additional cost sharing or other limitations or restrictions on coverage under a health benefit plan for health care services that are ordinarily or exclusively available to covered individuals of one sex to a transgender individual based on the fact that the individual’s sex assigned at birth, gender identity, or gender otherwise recorded is different from the one to which such health services are ordinarily or exclusively available. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Defeated (Passed by Indefinitely) in Commerce and Labor (5Y – 3N)

Assisted conception; parentage presumption. SB 612(Surovell) Makes the relevant law regarding children born as a result of assisted conception applicable to both same-sex and opposite-sex married couples. The bill also provides that a person is presumed to be the parent of a child if such person is married to the mother at the time of the child

‘s birth or was married to the mother within 300 days of the child’s birth. EV SUPPORTS

Status: Failed to report (defeated) in Courts of Justice (6Y -8N)

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[more_toggle text="View the 2017 General Assembly action!"]We were successful in killing all of the bad bills this session, but unfortunately none of the bills that we supported passed out of the House this session.

  • 2017 General Assembly Recap

    The General Assembly session for 2017 began on Wednesday, January 11 and concluded on Saturday, February 25. We tracked bills as they were filed and updated our supporters with the legislation’s progress. To ensure you receive those updates, make sure you’re on our list to receive action updates.

    In seven short weeks, LGBT Virginians faced a barrage of harmful legislation along with a few bills seeking to end discriminatory practices. As usual, this session was not without its ups and downs, and while we saw many of the same harmful and discriminatory bills we’ve seen in years past, we also watched LGBT-affirming legislation make it farther than it ever has, although ultimately not to the Governor’s desk. Nevertheless, we’re heartened by this sign of progress.

    Your advocacy was out in full force during this session. More than 10,000 emails were sent and countless calls were made to legislators urging them to keep their LGBT constituents a priority in policymaking.  Thanks to all who were involved in Equality Virginia’s Day of Action on February 7, 2017!  The Day of Action empowers LGBT and allied Virginians to create positive change, meet legislators and discuss legislation, and attend workshops hosted by some of the area’s top attorneys and fellow activists. Check out the photos from this year’s event here!

    Fortunately, Del. Bob Marshall’s bills (HB 1612, HB 1667, and HB 2011), all attempts to stigmatize and harm the LGBT community, failed to even make it out of subcommittee, preventing Virginia from following in the footsteps of North Carolina’s fallout from HB2.

    Unfortunately, resolutions that would have removed the same-sex marriage ban that still exists in our state Constitution also failed to make out of committee. Legislation (SB 783/Ebbin and SB 822/Wexton) that would have ended discriminatory practices in housing and employment respectively, both passed with overwhelming bipartisan support in the Senate but failed in the House on a party-line vote.

    HB 2025 (Freitas), which would have given a license to discriminate against loving lesbian and gay couples, passed both the Senate and House and was vetoed by Governor McAuliffe.

    The bills we followed in the 2017 session:

    STOP HARMFUL LEGISLATION:

    Religious freedom; solemnization of marriage SB 1324 (Carrico): Provides that no individual authorized to solemnize any marriage shall be required to do so and no religious organization shall be required to provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges for a purpose related to the solemnization of any marriage if the action would cause the individual or organization to violate a sincerely held religious belief. EV OPPOSES

    Status: Passed Senate (21-Y 19-N); Vetoed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe

    Physical Privacy Act – HB 1612 (Marshall): Requires that a government entity provide for members of the opposite sex separate restrooms and other facilities in a building owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the entity. The bill provides that, subject to certain exceptions, no individual shall enter a restroom or other facility designated for use by members of the opposite sex and creates a cause of action against the government entity if they do.  EV OPPOSES

    Status: Left in House General Laws Committee

    Public contracts; civil liability; gender identity; sexual orientation – HB 1667 (Marshall): Prohibits agencies of the Commonwealth and other public bodies from requiring any contractor entering into a public contract to agree to additional nondiscrimination provisions with respect to gender identity or sexual orientation. The bill also provides civil immunity for any business or nonprofit organization that does not provide any benefit or accommodation with respect to gender identity or sexual orientation.  EV OPPOSES

    Status: Left in House General Laws Committee

    Discrimination; separation of the sexes – HB 2011 (Marshall):  EV OPPOSES

    Status: Left in House General Laws Committee

    Religious freedom; solemnization of marriage HB 2025 (Freitas): Provides that no individual authorized to solemnize any marriage shall be required to do so and no religious organization shall be required to provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges for a purpose related to the solemnization of any marriage if the action would cause the individual or organization to violate a sincerely held religious belief. EV OPPOSES

    Status: Passed in the House (57-Y 37-N); Passed in the Senate (21-Y 19-N); Vetoed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe

    UPDATE VIRGINIA’S LAWS TO REFLECT MARRIAGE EQUALITY

    Same-sex marriages; civil unions – HB 1395 (Sickles), SB 782 (Ebbin): Repeals existing obsolete law banning same-sex marriages and civil unions. Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

    SB 782 Status: Passed-by indefinitely (killed) in Courts of Justice with letter (10-Y 2-N)

    HB 1395 Status: Left in Courts of Justice Committee

    Constitutional amendment (first resolution); marriage – HJ 538 (Sickles), SJ 216 (Ebbin), SJ 220 (Locke): Proposes the repeal of the constitutional amendment dealing with marriage that was approved by referendum at the November 2006 election. Read more here.  EV SUPPORTS

    HJ 538 Status: Left in Privileges and Elections Committee

    SJ 216/SJ 220 Status: Both were voted to full committee with a recommendation to refer to code commission

    END DISCRIMINATION

    Virginia Human Rights Act; nondiscrimination in public employment – SB 783 (Ebbin): Prohibits discrimination in public employment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, as defined in the bill. Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

    Status: Passed the Senate (25-Y 14-N); House Subcommittee failed to recommend reporting (2-Y 4-N)

    Fair Housing Law; unlawful discriminatory housing practices, sexual orientation, etc – SB 822 (Wexton): Adds discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity as an unlawful discriminatory housing practice. The bill defines “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” Read more here. EV SUPPORTS

    Status: Passed the Senate (25-Y 14-N); House Subcommittee failed to recommend reporting (2-Y 4-N)

    Virginia Human Rights Act; public employment, public accommodation, and housing; prohibited discrimination; sexual orientation HB 2129 (Levine): Prohibits discrimination in employment and public accommodation on the basis of sexual orientation. EV SUPPORTS WITH AMENDED LANGUAGE 

    Status: Subcommittee recommends to not report with substitute (5-Y 2-N)

    Prohibited discrimination in employment – HB 2057 (Kory): Prohibits discrimination in private or public employment based on sexual orientation. EV SUPPORTS WITH AMENDED LANGUAGE 

    Status: Subcommittee failed to recommend reporting out of committee (5-N 2-Y)

    BUILD SAFE COMMUNITIES

    Hate crimes; gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability; penalty – SB 1524 (Favola): Adds disability, gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense. EV SUPPORTS

    Status: Passed-by-indefinitely in Courts of Justice (9-Y 6-N)

    Hate crimes; reporting to State Police – HB 1702 (Sullivan): Includes within the definition of “hate crime” a criminal act committed against a person because of sexual orientation or gender identification and requires the reporting of the commission of such crime to the State Police. EV SUPPORTS

    Status: Subcommittee failed to recommend reporting (3-Y 5-N)

    Hate crimes; gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability; penalty HB 1776 (Plum): Adds gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability to the categories of victims whose intentional selection for a hate crime involving assault, assault and battery, or trespass for the purpose of damaging another’s property results in a higher criminal penalty for the offense. The bill also adds these categories of victims to the categories of hate crimes that are to be reported to the central repository of information regarding hate crimes maintained by the Virginia State Police. EV SUPPORTS

    Status: Tabled by voice vote

    Study; Virginia State Crime Commission; hate crimes; report HJ 708 (Plum): Seeks to fund the study the prevalence of hate crimes in the Commonwealth and the adequacy of the current Criminal Code provisions in addressing such offenses in comparison to the laws of other states across the nation. EV SUPPORTS THIS STUDY

    Status: Tabled in Rules Committee by voice vote

    Denouncing the intimidation of the Commonwealth’s residents – HR 303 (Lopez):  Affirms the commitment to diversity, and safeguarding the civil rights and dignity of all Virginians. EV SUPPORTS

    Status: Tabled in Rules Committee (15-Y 0-N)

    OTHER LEGISLATION

    Female genital mutilation; criminal penalty and civil action – SB 1060 (Black): EV IS MONITORING

    Status: Passed Senate (40-Y 0-N)

    Virginia Human Rights Act; unlawful discriminatory practice; anti-Semitism – HB 2261 (LaRock): EV IS MONITORING

    Status: Left in General Laws


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