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The Williams Institute

Documenting Discrimination on the Basis of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in State Employment bannerUCLA

Washington – Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Documentation of Discrimination


In 2006, the Washington legislature enacted a bill adding protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity to its state civil rights law, initially passed in 1949. Advocates had been trying to pass this legislation for 30 years, but were consistently met with strong opposition in the legislature. The first bill protecting individuals from sexual orientation discrimination was introduced in Washington in 1977. In 1986, gay rights opponents in Washington introduced proposals that would ban gays and lesbians from working in schools and government offices. These proposals were defeated in committee.

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