2017 Fall News & Views - page 7

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M
odeled after Senator Scott Weiner's earlier legislation
in San Francisco, SB 219 adds additional specificity to
existing anti-discrimination statements and provides more
detailed context to the resident rights as applied to those in
the LGBT community.
The bill prohibits denying admission, transferring, refusing to
transfer, or discharging a resident based wholly or partially
on a person’s actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender
identity, gender expression, or HIV status. It also prohibits
refusing to assign a transgender resident to a room in
accordance with the resident’s gender identity or preventing
a transgender resident from using the restroom in accordance
with their gender identity.
The bill puts in place requirements intended to enable
residents to live in accordance with their gender identity,
whether it is the right to use a particular restroom, dress as
they choose, or be addressed by the name or pronoun they
indicate, as well as rights surrounding roommate selection.
The bill also outlines expectations that confidential resident
information be protected and makes it clear that facility
policies must not single out LGBT residents for more restrictive
policies than other residents. More details on implementation
requirements were distributed to CALA members in late
November. The DSS Implementation Plan is expected before
the end of the year.
CALA has long advocated for welcoming, inclusive
environments for all seniors and has been directly involved in
establishing laws that ensure our LGBT residents have a positive
experience in our communities. In 2014, CALA supported a bill
that expanded the RCFE anti-discrimination statute to include
a prohibition on discrimination based on
actual or perceived
gender identity
, in addition to race, color, religion, national
origin, sex, marital status, registered domestic partner status,
and actual or perceived sexual orientation (HSC 1569.269(b)).
CALA also sponsored legislation that expanded caregiver
training to include LGBT cultural sensitivity (AB 1570, Chapter
698, Statutes of 2014) and supported legislation that required
LGBT training for RCFE administrators (AB 663, Chapter 675,
Statutes of 2013). Early and ongoing education through CALA
conferences has also contributed to a robust exchange of good
practices and effective approaches to meet the needs of our
residents and staff.
CALA strongly believes in the rights of residents and the
respect that our LGBT residents, as all residents, deserve. After
working closely with Senator Wiener and the sponsors on
amendments that removed a proposed private right of action
and resolved our other concerns, CALA was pleased to support
this bill. Thank you to all the members who wrote letters to
Governor Brown in support of this bill...your voice was heard!
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