Ayanna Pressley Joins Advocates to Launch Yes on 3 ‘Not in Our Name’ Campaign

Ayanna Pressley

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Yes on 3 Campaign Launches New Ad to Dispel Myths about Transgender Nondiscrimination Law

BOSTON—Prominent women’s organizations and sexual assault prevention advocates, including Democratic Congressional Nominee and Boston City Councilor Ayanna Pressley, joined together today to launch ‘Not in Our Name”, an effort in the final weeks of the Yes on 3 campaign focused on women speaking up, rejecting the incorrect notion that the state’s transgender nondiscrimination law makes communities less safe for women and children. The law, enacted in 2016 by Governor Charlie Baker, protects transgender people from discrimination and harassment in public places such as restaurants, retail shops, and medical offices.

As part of the event, held at YW Boston, the Yes on 3 campaign announced support from 50 of the state’s leading sexual assault prevention agencies (full list below) and released a new ad which features survivors sexual assault and advocates of sexual assault prevention supporting Yes on 3.

Councilor Pressley was emphatic that any suggestion the transgender nondiscrimination law put women and children at risk of assault is not based in fact.

“As a survivor of sexual assault, I can say with clear conviction that this is simply hate-filled rhetoric – that this law will make it so women and children are less safe,” Pressley said. “Since this law originally passed in 2016, there has been no increase of public safety incidents in restrooms in our state. That is why you see many organizations here today, standing in solidarity, many organizations who work together for the rights of women and girls, victims of domestic and sexual violence, standing shoulder to shoulder with activists, business leaders, elected officials and faith leaders to uphold these protections. We will not be a political trope or pawn in your hate-mongering and division.”

Gov. Baker, a Republican, signed the law into effect in 2016 after it was passed by the Massachusetts legislature with bipartisan, supermajority support Shortly after the law went into effect in October 2016, a small group of opponents gathered the minimum number of signatures required to place the law on the ballot for repeal in November 2018.

Massachusetts is the first state in the nation where transgender protections will be up for a vote on a statewide ballot measure. Currently, Massachusetts is among 19 states and more than 250 municipalities with nondiscrimination protections for transgender people in public places. The Massachusetts law also protects transgender people from discrimination in public restrooms and locker rooms.

In addition to the 50 sexual assault and domestic violence prevention organizations and experts, more than 1,500 organizations, including law enforcement officials, business leaders, members of the faith community, labor unions, and more have joined the coalition in support of upholding the law at the ballot on November 6.

The full list of organizations that announced support today include:

American Association of University Women

Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) – Center for Violence Prevention and Recovery

Boston Area Rape Crisis Center

Boston GLOW

Boston Medical Center Domestic Violence Program

Center for Hope & Healing, Inc.

Domestic Violence Ended (DOVE)

Economic Mobility Pathways (formerly Crittenton Women’s Union)

Elizabeth Freeman Center

Family and Community Resources, Inc.

Fertility Within Reach

Girls Inc.

HarborCOV

HAVEN at MGH

Jane Doe, Inc

Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center

Jewish Family & Children’s Service

LGBTQIA Domestic Violence Coalition

March Forward Massachusetts

Massachusetts Alliance of Portuguese Speakers (MAPS) – Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Program

Massachusetts Chapter of the National Organization for Women

Massachusetts Chapter Victim Rights Law Center

MataHari- Women’s Work Center

NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts

National Association of Social Workers

New England Learning Center for Women in Transition

New Hope

Newton Wellesley Hospital – Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Program

Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund

REACH Beyond Domestic Violence, Inc.

RESPOND, Inc.

Rosie’s PlaceSafe Passage

Saheli, Inc.

The Network/La Red

The Second Step

Transition House

UU Urban Ministry/Renewal House

Womanshelter/Companeras

Women Will Vote

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom

Women’s Bar Association (WBA) of Massachusetts

Women’s Lunch Place

YWCA – Central Massachusetts

YWCA Boston

Freedom for All Massachusetts is the coalition working to uphold the state’s current nondiscrimination protections for transgender people in public places like restaurants, retail shops and hospitals, ensuring that Massachusetts continues to be a national leader on equality and fairness for all. A November 2018 ballot referendum will ask voters whether they want to retain the law, which has been effective since 2016.

[From a News Release]

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