Sadly, bathroom bills which are a direct attack on transgender people and their rights saw a massive rise in prominence in 2016, and it’s still a hot topic in the early days of 2017.
Starting things off on a positive note for transgender rights, the Governor of Virginia has vowed to veto a harmful anti-LGBT bathroom bill if it makes it to his desk.
The bill in question is HB 1612 and was proposed by GOP lawmaker Bob Marshall. The proposed law would basically ban trans people from using public bathrooms in state owned facilities, but the law actually gets worse from there.
One of the most concerning provisions would force schools to notify parents if a child asks to be called by a different name or gender, even if the child has not come out or is in danger of a violent reaction within their home.
McAuliffe’s Communications Director Brian Coy said he would make every effort to veto the law: “Governor McAuliffe has been clear that he will veto any bill that restricts the rights of Virginians based on sexual orientation or gender identity.”
He also went on to draw attention to North Carolina’s HB2 which has cost the state millions with the loss of several high profile gigs, sporting events and even expansions for major companies such as PayPal.
Coy continued: “As we saw in North Carolina, these bills don’t just hamper civil rights – they kill jobs. The Governor is hopeful that Republicans in the General Assembly will drop these counterproductive bills and turn their focus toward building a stronger and more equal Virginia economy.”
There is also a chance that the state of Texas could get it’s very own bathroom bill, but that may be thankfully hampered by a statement from the Association of Business about the cost of such a bill. According to them, it could cost Texas 100,000 jobs and $8 billion in the state’s economy.
Equality Virginia said of HB1612: “Together, we defeated a similar bill last year and together we will defeat this one. After what we have witnessed in North Carolina, all members of the General Assembly should immediately voice their opposition to this bill.”
With any luck, the massive damage to the economy and backlash that North Carolina has suffered due to their transphobia will be a lesson to any and all states thinking of employing such a bill.