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For Immediate Release: Special Session Statement from Equality Texas
Posted on June 6, 2017 at 2:56 pm

Chuck Smith, Chief Executive Officer

“On the heels of the recently-concluded 85th Legislative ‘Session of Oppression,’ during which Texas lawmakers passed egregious laws targeting LGBTQ people, women, and immigrants, it is extremely disappointing that Governor Greg Abbott is calling legislators back to pass an anti-transgender bathroom bill.

Governor Abbott is letting the lieutenant governor set the agenda to push for a morally bankrupt, manufactured problem that will cause billions of dollars of damage to our economy. The lieutenant governor and his longtime business partner Steven Hotze, whose group Conservative Republicans of Texas has been named a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, have been pushing discrimination and hate of LGBTQ people as one of their primary objectives for years.

Any such bathroom or so-called ‘privacy’ legislation that targets transgender Texans – an already vulnerable population – for unequal treatment will put innocent adults and children in harm’s way. It is unconscionable.

Lt. Gov. Patrick has spent most of 2016 and 2017 grandstanding on this issue, cyncially expressing fake outrage and misrepresenting the facts to manipulate Texans into fear, simply because they have not had the chance to meet our fellow transgender Texans. These are traits unworthy of any person who holds public office.

There is no middle ground on discrimination. We cannot tolerate any effort that seeks to demonize, stigmatize, and endanger our transgender family members, friends, coworkers, students, and neighbors. We will not give up in our efforts to prevent the passage and enactment of such a dangerous and immoral law.”

Lou Weaver, Transgender Programs Coordinator

“Transgender Texans, like all Texans, need to use public facilities without fear for their safety or security.  Any bathroom bill will roll back decades-old policies, laws, and perfectly functioning social norms that ensure that transgender people have access to restrooms appropriate to their gender.  All parents are concerned about the safety of their children, but the lieutenant governor is exploiting that parental instinct to attack a vulnerable community, subjecting transgender children and adults to harm when they pose no risk to others.  These kind of laws are unenforceable without massive police intrusion on privacy rights, and they create an expensive liability for businesses and educators.”