MADISON — Tony Evers, newly sworn in as Wisconsin’s governor, signed an order banning anti-transgender discrimination in state employment on Monday.
Evers announced signing the order on his Facebook page. “Each person in Wisconsin deserves to be treated with dignity and respect,” he said in a post. “This fosters sound government, society, and business, and its just the right thing to do.”
Fair Wisconsin, the state’s largest LGBTQ rights organization, praised the action. “THANK YOU, Governor Evers, for not waiting until after the polka-ing tonight, to sign your first executive order extending nondiscrimination protections to transgender government workers, and so many others in public service, contracting and more,” the group said on their Facebook page.
The Human Rights Campaign, which had endorsed Evers over Scott Walker, also praised the order.
“Discrimination in any form is wrong, and through his actions today — signing his first executive order since taking office — Governor Evers continues to demonstrate that he will fight day in and day out to uphold the Wisconsin values of fairness, justice and equality,” said HRC Wisconsin State Director Wendy Strout in a statement.
Wisconsin is one of 28 states that doesn’t ban discrimination for gender identity. The order only covers state employees.
The HRC stated that State Rep. Mark Spreitzer, State Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa and State Sen. Tim Carpenter have introduced the Privacy Protection and Gender Identity Non-Discrimination Act, legislation that would add gender identity and expression to Wisconsin’s pre-existing nondiscrimination protections.