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N.J. governor declares ‘safe haven’ for transgender, nonbinary people

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By Sophie Nieto-Munoz| While other states pass bans on transgender health care, New Jersey will be a “safe haven” for those seeking gender-affirming care, Gov.

Phil Murphy said Tuesday. Murphy signed an executive order Tuesday directing all state departments and agencies to protect those providing or receiving gender-affirming health care services.

Under the order, state officials will be barred from cooperating in other states’ investigations into whether someone sought the care in New Jersey, and extradition to other states in those instances will be prohibited. “Across the nation, we are witnessing attacks led by certain states that seek to undermine the equality, dignity, and safety of the LGBTQIA+ community, especially transgender and nonbinary youth,” Murphy said in a statement. “As leaders, our greatest responsibility is ensuring that every person we represent, regardless of their gender identity or gender expression, is entitled to respect, fairness and freedom.” New Jersey is estimated to be home to more than 30,000 trans and nonbinary residents, according to the Williams Institute at UCLA.

Murphy, a second-term Democrat who is rumored to be eyeing a presidential run, is pushing to make the Garden State a trans refuge as nearly a dozen other states advance policies and laws to limit care for trans and nonbinary people.

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