New York City Mayor Eric Adams signed a bill Friday declaring obesity a new legally protected class.
The legislation signed by the New York mayor bars individuals from being discriminated against for their height and weight for access to employment or public housing.
“It shouldn’t matter how tall you are or how much you weigh when you’re looking for a job, are out on the town, or trying to rent an apartment,” Adams said at the Friday signing ceremony. “No one should ever be discriminated against based on their height and weight. We all deserve the same access to employment, housing, and public accommodations, regardless of our appearance.”
Incidents of weight discrimination will be investigated by the New York City Commission on Human Rights.
New York City Republican City Councilman Joseph Borelli warned in April the new law will “empower people to sue anyone and everything.”
“I’m overweight, but I’m not a victim,” Borelli told the New York Times in April. “No one should feel bad for me except for my struggling shirt buttons.”
The mayor’s latest legislation illustrates another hallmark example where public policy follows culture. Obesity had already become a protected class under the hierarchy of oppression outlined by left-wing social justice standards for years. In January, TIME Magazine stigmatized exercise as white supremacist four months after Lizzo, an icon of the pro-fat movement disguised as “body positivity,” railed against “oppression” at the Video Music Awards. But if Lizzo were a true crusader for social justice, she’d blast the food industry for driving the weight epidemic today, wherein black Americans have the highest prevalence of obesity.
In her book, “You Have the Right to Remain Fat,” San Francisco author and activist Virgie Tovar describes fat people as the ultimate victims.
“In our culture, fat people are used to scapegoat anxieties about excess, immorality, and an uncontained relationship to desire and consumption,” Tovar writes, and describes “fatphobia” as the “new language of classism and racism.”
“It is no accident that fat people are underrepresented in the workplace, academia, and mass media,” Tovar added.
As obesity trends rise, however, so does the number of people with disabilities, unable to perform tasks critical to jobs with physical demands.
Overweight airline passengers have also begun circulating online petitions to mandate airlines offer free seats and bigger bathrooms to accommodate obese travelers. In 2021, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) was already compelled to update weight guidelines for aircraft to take into account heavier passengers with heavier luggage than when safety standards were last updated in 2005.