N.J. considers protecting crime victims from discrimination



A proposal in New Jersey would designate crime victims as a protected class under the state’s anti-discrimination law.

The state already prohibits discriminating against people because of their race, sex, age, and other reasons.

But a proposal up for consideration in the state Senate Monday would bar discrimination against an individual who has been the victim of a crime.

It prevents the crime from dogging the victim long after it has occurred, said state Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, D-Bergen, who sponsored the bill.

“Somebody could say, ‘Well, you’ve been victimized in a crime. I don’t want you to live here in case [the perpetrators] come back,'” she said. “Or, ‘You took two weeks off to go testify in court or because you needed medical care. You’re gonna lose your job.'”

The bill would still require approval from the state Assembly, before it goes to Republican Gov. Chris Christie for his signature.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Help us get to 100% of our membership goal to support the reporters covering our region, the producers bringing you great local programs and the educators who teach all our children.