At the city's annual meeting in May of this year, the people of Nantucket voted for an amendment to Section 71, Gender Equality on Beaches. Charter. The decision was made: “To promote equality for all people, anyone should be allowed to go topless on any public or private beach within the city of Nantucket.”
However, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy's office officially recognized the amendment only last week.
“We emphasize that our approval in no way implies any lobbying of political views and movements that could lead to the adoption of the by-law,” — the attorney general's office explained in a letter to Nantucket City Hall. The Attorney General's limited review function requires that a decision be made based solely on the conformity of the amendments to state law, and not on any political opinion.
The Attorney General also found that Nantucket's charter was consistent with two Massachusetts laws, “which, under certain circumstances, may allow exposure of the chest.”
Last week, Massachusetts state official Dylan Fernandez, who represents Nantucket in the state legislature, posted on social media his support for the new amendment.
“The beaches of Nantucket have been officially recognized as areas where both men and women are allowed to be topless. This is a victory for gender equality.
The Beaches Gender Equality Bylaw Amendment is the first of its kind in Massachusetts. It is currently unclear what kind of picture will be observed on the numerous public and private beaches of the island after the onset of the summer swimming season.