Milwaukee County now a sanctuary for transgender and non-binary people after proposal passes

NOW: Milwaukee County now a sanctuary for transgender and non-binary people after proposal passes

MILWAUKEE COUNTY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- A resolution to make Milwaukee County a sanctuary county for transgender and non-binary people passed the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors 12-4 on Thursday.

Monei Evans, a trans woman and advocate at Diverse and Resilient, an LGBTQ advocacy group, said it was a long time coming.

"For me I think it means like a little protection, a little bit," said Evans.

Evans said this is just the beginning of making room to protect trans and non-binary people's rights. That's a sentiment Milwaukee County Supervisor Ryan Clancy agreed with.

"I want to underline that this is only a first step and that we have a great deal of work to do in health care, over policing and housing and employment," said Clancy at the Thursday committee meeting.

The resolution focuses on protecting gender-affirming care saying it will not prosecute people seeking, providing, or receiving gender-affirming care like puberty blockers, hormones or surgery.

It also states that if the state should pass legislation criminalizing these actions, the city would make enforcing those requirements, "their lowest priority." It also claims that the county opposes legal violence against the trans and non-binary community.

"This is saying you know we are standing with our trans and non-binary intersex non-conforming communities," said Milwaukee County Supervisor Clancy.

Justin Roby of Diverse and Resilient said, last year at least five trans people lost their lives, predominantly to violence. He hopes this new legislation helps stop those trends.

"That's how we fight stigma and that's how we fight discrimination," said Roby.

Roby said their fight to fully protect the trans and non-binary community isn't over but knowing Milwaukee now backs them gives more optimism for the future.

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