Arizona’s Appropriations Committee passed an anti-transgender bathroom bill on Wednesday 27, in a 7-4 vote. The bill will now be presented to the House floor for consideration.
Led by Rep. John Kavanagh, his bill, originally proposing that a transgender person (or gender non-conformist) would be legally required to use the bathroom which their birth certificate delegated, and failure to do so, would have resulted in a misdemeanor charge. Several organizations and advocates urged Kavanagh to revise his unnecessary and discriminatory bill, which he did, and his new bill has now passed Arizona’s Appropriations Committee (chaired by Kavanagh).
The newly passed bill allows business owners to discriminate against transgender people and other gender-nonconformists from using bathrooms and changing facilities associated with their expressed gender identity. Instead of protecting the rights and privacy of the transgender community, the bathroom bill, SB1045, protects industries from discrimination lawsuits or claims.
“…Rep. Kavanagh and his six allies instead chose to defend discrimination and protect discriminators” National Center for Transgender Equality Executive Director, Mara Keisling, said in a press release shared with 429Magazine. She continued, “[The bill] brings more shame to Arizona’s legislature for isolating and targeting another marginalized community.”
The passing of this bill has stirred up transgender organizations and activists and approximately 200 people, in protest of the bill, showed up at the hearing. They chanted, “shame, shame, shame” as the bill passed the Arizona panel, late Wednesday night, reported the Huffington Post.
“This bill takes away the ability of their own government to enact their own laws and protect LGBT communities” National Center for Transgender Equality, Director of Communications, Vincent Paolo Villano, said in an interview with 429Magazine.