Texas Senate Approves Controversial Bathroom Bill, Opponents Say It Will Hurt Transgender People


Despite opponents arguing that it will hurt transgender people by discriminating against them, the Texas Senate on Tuesday tentatively approved a controversial “bathroom” bill with a 21-10 vote.

If it becomes law, Senate Bill 6, described as a legislative priority of Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings and other publicly-owned facilities that match their “biological sex” and not gender identity. It would also preempt local anti-discrimination laws meant to allow transgender residents to use public bathrooms that match their gender identity.

Individuals who violate the measure will not face any criminal charges for using an opposite-sex bathroom. SB 6 would levy between $1,000 to $10,500 in civil penalties on schools or government entities which fail to comply with the measure, depending on the number of violations.

Republican state Senator Lois Kolkhorst who introduced the bill said even though she has been subjected to much ridicule as a result of the bill, the aim of the measure is to protect women and children.

“I’ve been subjected to many jokes, everybody snickering and talking about the bathroom bill. They’ve made light of the issue, accusing us of wasting time,” she said on the Senate floor according to KVUE. “I will tell you as a woman, this is not a joke.”