This Week’s Developments in LGBTQ Nondiscrimination

November 16, 2018 • 9:32 am

Arizonans elect Kyrsten Sinema, first openly bisexual U.S. Senator in history; Transgender Awareness Week comes as 2018 will likely be deadliest year for trans Americans

WASHINGTON – The 2018 Rainbow Wave continued this week with the election of Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, the openly bisexual Democrat running for U.S. Senate in Arizona. Thousands of absentee ballots were counted days after Election Day, securing Sinema’s lead.

This week is Transgender Awareness Week. The occasion is particularly important this year as the transgender community faces an uptick in violence and an onslaught of attacks from the Trump administration. Freedom for All Americans’ Weekly LGBTQ Nondiscrimination Update has all the latest developments that should be on your radar:

Arizonans Elect First Ever Openly Bisexual U.S. Senator:
Arizonans have elected Kyrsten Sinema to the U.S. Senate, making her the first openly bisexual Senator in U.S. history. The race was not called until a week after Election Day, with large numbers of absentee and mail ballots widening Sinema’s lead. Sinema first made history in 2012, when she became the first openly bisexual person ever elected to Congress as a House member representing portions of Maricopa County. Her victory is a milestone for LGBTQ representation in the Senate, and for bisexual Americans in particular. Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin made history as the first openly gay or lesbian person elected to the U.S. Senate in 2012. Baldwin won re-election last Tuesday, ensuring that there will be two openly LGBTQ voices in the U.S. Senate come 2019.

Transgender Awareness Week Comes Amidst Ongoing Attacks From Trump Administration:
It is Transgender Awareness Week – the week-long occasion is used as an opportunity for advocacy and education around important trans issues and to give visibility to transgender and gender non-conforming people. The week culminates on Tuesday in the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, when vigils will be held across the country to honor the lives lost this year to transphobic acts of violence. Transgender Awareness Week is taking on heightened importance this year: Not only is the transgender community facing an onslaught of attacks from the Trump administration, attempting to diminish their freedoms and equality, but transgender people are likelier to face instances of violence and to be targeted for who they are. According to organizations that track violence against transgender people, 2018 may be the deadliest year for transgender Americans ever.

Freedom for All Americans is working to secure comprehensive nondiscrimination protections for all LGBTQ Americans, no matter which state they call home. For more information on state-specific legislation, or to browse our stories of discrimination, please visit

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