Gender Expression and Identity
According to the HRC, gender expression and gender identity are similar and separate terms.
Gender Identity: One's innermost concept of self as male, female, a blend of both or neither. One's gender identity can be the same or different from their sex assigned at birth.
Gender expression: External appearance of one's gender identity, usually expressed through behavior, clothing, haircut or voice, and which may or may not conform to socially defined behaviors and characteristics typically associated with being either masculine or feminine.
Sexual Orientation is romantic or sexual attraction to other people, and is not necessarily directly linked to gender.
- Employment: 35,000 LGBTQ workers in NH, that’s 5%, with a total population of 59,000. Those numbers are nearly identical in Maine. Both states have high ratings as a LGBTQ supportive place to live and work.
- Legislastion: On November 8, 2005, after nearly three decades of working to pass non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ+ Mainers, Maine became the 16th state to protect LGBTQ+ people from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity and expression in employment, housing, education, credit and public accommodations. Maine is the sixth state whose law includes gender identity and expression. These protections were enacted by amending the Maine Human Rights Act.
- Healthcare: Typically LGBTQ folks seek health care from providers who provide gender affirming care, and recognize the broad spectrum of sexual and gender identities and the variety of health care needs specific to each individual. In Concord, New Hampshire ,Equality Health Center is one such place that provides healthcare for LGBTQ people and families. In Maine (several locations), Maine Family Planning is one such place providing gender affirming care.
- Public Accommodations, including gyms, yoga studios, places of business, and recreation. The law makes it illegal for places of public accommodation to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or “. . . in any manner withhold from or deny the full and equal enjoyment . . . of the accommodations, advantages, facilities, goods, services or privileges of public accommodation.”
This topic matters because our language, imaging, and actions are important in terms of who feels welcome at any class, workshop, training, or association to YIA.
Further Reading & Resources
Fast Facts Citations
Glossary of Terms