New York Passes Bill to Criminalize “Overweight Discrimination”
The New York City Council has passed a bill that prohibits discrimination based on height and weight. If approved by the Mayor, the legislation would make it illegal to discriminate against people on the basis of their weight in employment, housing, public accommodation, and restaurants.
In a press release, the City Council stated that “Size discrimination is a social justice issue and a public health threat,” and that “people with different body types are denied the jobs and promotions they deserve, and their entire existence is denied by a society that offers no legal remedy for this pervasive prejudice.”
Councilor Shaun Abreu, who prepared the bill, added that “Thanks to the advocates, labor organizations and medical professionals united behind this case, New York City will now be the world’s most populous municipality to ban size discrimination.”
The ban comes after those who spoke at hearings before the vote emphasized difficulties in sitting in restaurants and theaters, being turned down by hosts, and being unable to advance in their careers.
The bill is set to go into effect this month if approved by the Mayor, making New York City the latest major city to offer legal protection against overweight discrimination.