Clarify Various Provisions of the Maine Human Rights Act

Last updated: Jul 3, 2019

Details about this bill
Category: Wage and Labor
Status: Passed
Sponsor: Representative Donna Bailey, House 14
Session: 129
Bill #: LD 1701



UPDATE 6-23-19: Governor Mills has signed this bill into law. New chaptered law is here.


This bill makes changes to the Maine Human Rights Act in order to clarify its proper application and interpretation. In particular, the bill describes the behaviors that may constitute harassment in reference to unlawful discrimination; clarifies the Act's coverage of claims based on association and based on the perception that an individual belongs to a protected class; and provides a definition of "gender identity." The bill provides needed clarification related to several Maine Human Rights Act provisions highlighted by recent court decisions, including confirming that a leave of absence can be a reasonable accommodation for a disability in employment, and that individual employees may be liable for their discriminatory behavior in certain circumstances. The bill also makes grammatical changes and corrects cross-references.