This page contains state-specific research for the state of Massachusetts:
- By Jordan Blair Woods, Brad Sears, Christy MallorySeptember 2016“Gay panic” and “transgender panic” defenses have been asserted by defendants in criminal trials throughout the U.S. since the 1960s. In these cases, defendants have argued that their violent behavior was a rational response to discovering that the victim was LGBT. The defenses are rooted in irrational fears based on homophobia and transphobia, and send the message that violence against LGBT people is understandable and acceptable. When successful, these defenses have resulted in murder charges being reduced to manslaughter or another lesser offense. To date, only one state, California, has banned defendants from asserting gay or transgender panic defense by statute. In this brief, Williams Institute scholars present model language, based on the language adopted in California, that other states may use to eliminate use of the defenses through legislation. The model legislation offers language to prohibit defendants from using gay and trans panic defenses under each of the major defenses theories of provocation, insanity/diminished capacity, and self-defense. In addition, the brief provides an overview of the ways in which the defenses have been asserted in trials throughout the last several decades, and evaluates potential constitutional challenges to state legislation eliminating use of the defenses.
- By Andrew R. Flores, Jody L. Herman, Gary J. Gates, and Taylor N. T. BrownJune 2016Utilizing data from the 2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), which includes representative state-level surveys, Williams Institute scholars provide up-to-date estimates of the percentage and number of adults who identify as transgender in the United States. Approximately 0.6% of adults in the United States, or 1.4 million individuals, identify as transgender. The study also provides the first ever state-level estimates of the number and percentage of adults who identify as transgender for all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Differences exist in the percentage of adults who identify as transgender among the states, ranging from 0.3% in North Dakota to 0.8% in Hawaii. Differences by age also exist, with younger adults more likely to identify as transgender than older adults. An estimated 0.7% of adults ages 18 to 24, 0.6% of adults ages 25 to 64, and 0.5% of adults ages 65 and older identify as transgender.
- By Jody L. Herman, Christy Mallory, and Bianca D.M. WilsonNearly 300,000 transgender youth and adults may be negatively impacted by legislation introduced in 15 states. These bills would limit access to single-sex restrooms and locker rooms at schools and in public places; limit protections based on gender identity; permit individuals and businesses to discriminate against transgender people based on religious and moral beliefs; and limit the ability to change certain vital records documents, such as birth certificates, or enforce the use of birth certificates to establish an individual's sex for certain purposes. The report includes a brief description of each bill, which age groups it would affect, and how many transgender people we estimate live in each state.
- By M.V. Lee BadgettJuly 2011Much of the debate about marriage rights for same-sex couples has focused on material and legal benefits. However, some of the primary benefits of marriage equality for same-sex couples and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people might be psychological.
- By Jody L. HermanApril 2011Transgender residents of Massachusetts have reported experiencing discrimination in employment. Loss of employment due to anti-transgender bias often means lost wages, lost health insurance coverage, and housing instability. This study estimates that the impact of discrimination is likely to cost the Commonwealth millions of dollars each year.
- MemorandumSeptember 2009This report documents public sector employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in Massachusetts. The report is part of a 15 chapter study that documents a widespread and persistent pattern of unconstitutional discrimination by state governments against LGBT people.
The Business Boost from Marriage Equality: Evidence from the Health and Marriage Equality in Massachusetts SurveyBy Naomi G. Goldberg, Michael D. Steinberger, M.V. Lee BadgettMay 2009This brief draws on two sources of data, a survey and state-collected tax revenue data, and finds that marriages have had a positive economic effect on Massachusetts – likely providing a boost of over $100 million to the state economy.
The Effects of Marriage Equality in Massachusetts: A Survey of the Experiences and Impact of Marriage on Same-Sex CouplesBy Christopher Ramos, Naomi G. Goldberg, and M.V. Lee BadgettMay 2009May 17th, 2009 marks the 5th year of marriage equality in the state of Massachusetts. To mark this anniversary, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health conducted the largest survey to date of married same-sex couples, the Health and Marriage Equality in Massachusetts (HMEM) survey.
- By Adam P. Romero, Clifford J. Rosky, M.V. Lee Badgett, Gary J. GatesJune 2008Demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children based on data from Census 2000.
- By M.V. Lee Badgett, Brad SearsJune 2008This memo explores how the economic benefits of allowing same-sex couples to marry are limited by the current policy of forbidding out-of-state same-sex couples to marry in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The analysis suggests that allowing non-resident same-sex couples to marry by August 1, 2008, would boost the Massachusetts economy by a total of $111 million over a three year period, or $37 million each year; increase Massachusetts state and local revenues by over $5.1 million over a three year period, or $1.75 million per year; and create and sustain approximately 330 new jobs in the state for the next three years.