Discrimination

Discrimination is defined as unfair treatment because of an individual’s membership in a particular group.

Transgender Discrimination in the U.S.

From the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey by the National Center for Transgender Equality:

  • Triple the rate of unemployment: Survey respondents experience unemployment at three times the rate of the population as a whole.
  • Significant losses of jobs and careers: sixteen percent (16%) reported losing a job because of their gender identity in their lifetime and of respondents who had a job in the previous year, 30% reported being fired, denied a promotion, or experiencing some other form of mistreatment related to their gender identity or expression.
  • High rates of poverty: Twenty-nine percent (29%) of transgender people in our sample were living below the poverty line.
  • Significant housing instability: Thirty percent (30%) of our sample have been or are homeless, 23% have faced eviction or were denied housing, and 26% were forced to seek temporary space.
  • Inequitable access to accurate identity documents: only eleven percent (11%) of respondents who wanted to update their ID documents reported that all of their IDs had their correct name and gender and 68% reported that none of their IDs had their correct name or gender.

Discrimination in Massachusetts: Findings from the U.S. Transgender Survey

The Massachusetts findings from the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey by the National Center for Transgender Equality showed:

  • 21% of respondents were evicted from housing or were denied housing because of their gender identity or expression.
  • 24% of respondents have experienced homelessness in their lifetime.
  • 22% of respondents who held or applied for a job in the previous year reported being fired, denied a promotion, or not being hired because of their gender identity or expression.
  • Only 11% of respondents reported that all of their IDs had their correct name and gender, while 61% reported that none of their IDs had their correct name or gender.
  • 28% of respondents experienced a problem with health insurance coverage related to their gender identity, including denied for transition-related care or denial of routine care because of their gender identity.
  • 52% of respondents who have interacted with police reported harassment by officers including verbal harassment, physical and/or sexual assault, and repeated misgendering.
  • 61% of transgender adults reported being uncomfortable seeking police assistance when needed.

For more information about hate violence statistics visit The National Coalition for Anti-Violence Programs and read their 2017 LGBTQ and HIV-affected Hate and Intimate Partner Violence Report.

If you believe that you have been the victim of discrimination in employment, housing, a homeless shelter, a hospital, a school, at a bank, by a government or state agency, the police, a retail establishment, a restaurant, a hotel, while voting, or you have been the victim of a hate crime because of your gender identity or gender expression, there are resources to assist you.

The following resources can be helpful to you if you’ve experienced discrimination and are wondering what you can do about it. You are also welcome to send us an email at info@masstpc.org. We’ll do what we can to help, but please check out these resources first, as we will most often refer you to one or more of them.

Statewide Help

If you believe that you have been the victim of discrimination or a hate crime because of your gender identity or gender expression, the following resources may be helpful:

How to file complaints of discrimination with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office

There are laws that protect the rights of trans and gender nonconforming people in Massachusetts. If you believe that you have been the victim of discrimination or have experienced threats, intimidation, or coercion because of your gender identity or gender expression, please contact the Civil Rights Division of the Attorney General’s Office in one of the following ways:

  • File an e-complaint online at www.mass.gov/ago/complaints (select “Civil Rights Complaint”)
  • Call our hotline at (617) 963-2917; for TTY please call (617) 727-4765
  • Meet with us in person at 100 Cambridge Street, 11th Floor, Boston, MA 02108 between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on weekdays.
How to file with the MA Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) for Gender-Based Housing or Employment Discrimination
Download PDF version
How the MCAD Process Works

A charge of gender-based discrimination* must be filed in person at the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD). If you believe you have been discriminated against, you should go directly to one of the MCAD locations in Boston, Worcester or Springfield within 300 days of the incident.

What you should bring?

Bring any relevant names, dates, addresses, telephone numbers, witnesses’ names; and any other paperwork that will help investigate and establish your allegation of unlawful discrimination.

For employment: Have your employer’s name, address, the approximate number of employees and name of parent company.

For housing: Have the landlord’s or property manager’s name and/or the real estate agent’s name.

For public accommodations: Bring the name of the owner or manager of the establishment.

Office Hours: 8:45am – 5:00pm, Monday – Friday. Most claims take about 1 hour and 45 minutes to complete from start to finish.

MCAD Boston
(617) 994-6000
John McCormack Building
One Ashburton Place
6th floor, Room 601
Boston, MA 02108

MCAD Worcester
(413) 739-2145
Worcester City Hall
455 Main Street
Room 100
Worcester, MA 01608

MCAD Springfield
(508) 799-8010
436 Dwight Street
2nd floor, Room 220
Springfield, MA 01103

*Discrimination against trans people currently falls under “sex” discrimination and/or disability discrimination under the MCAD regulations.

Close up of a file tab with the word complaints, focus on the main text and blurred effect

In Massachusetts, it is unlawful to discriminate against anyone on the basis of gender identity in areas of employment, housing, public education, credit/lending and public accommodations. Contact us if you or someone you know have experienced discrimination based on gender identity or gender expression.

Report Harm/Discrimination

In Massachusetts, it is unlawful to discriminate against anyone on the basis of gender identity in areas of employment, housing, public education, credit/lending and public accommodations. Contact us if you or someone you know have experienced discrimination based on gender identity or gender expression.

string(0) ""
Sending
User Review
0 (0 votes)
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)