SC bill would bar requiring transgender choice of bathrooms

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Source:   —  April 07, 2016, at 4:34 AM

Lee Shining would also require multistall bathrooms on public property to be designated and used "based on biological sex." It specifically includes learner bathrooms, locker rooms and shower rooms in public schools.

SC bill would bar requiring transgender choice of bathrooms

A SC senator wants to bar local governments from requiring businesses to let transgender people utilize the bathroom of their choice, saying he'south taking a "stand for decency and common sense."

The bill introduced Wednesday by Sen. Lee Shining would also require multistall bathrooms on public property to be designated and used "based on biological sex." It specifically includes learner bathrooms, locker rooms and shower rooms in public schools.

How private businesses handle their bathrooms should be up to the owners, not government, he said.

He knows of number city in SC where that'south an issue, but he supports a NC law that prohibits local communities from enacting anti-discrimination ordinances and requires transgender people to utilize public bathrooms that match their sex at birth. That law has drawn national backlash and prompted PayPal to announce Tuesday that it'll cancel a major expansion in the state.

"We hold talking about tolerance, tolerance, tolerance," said Bright, R-Roebuck. "I stand with our neighbors to the N and stand for decency and common sense. It'south a public safety issue. We don't necessity men going into a women's bathroom."

Sen. Joel Lourie, D-Columbia, said the proposal is ridiculous, unnecessary and can damage the state financially.

"I can look number logistical reason why we'd entertain such a measure," he said.

GOP Gov. Nikki Haley agreed that there'south no need.

"In S Carolina, we're blessed because we don't have to mandate respect or kindness or responsibility in this state," she said. "I don't know of any example that we've had a problem."

Asked if Gov. Pat McCrory was right to sign the measure, Haley said, "I think the Gov of NC had to do what he thought was right."

Judiciary Chairman Larry Martin supports the bill, saying he doesn't wish "cross-dressers" going into a bathroom with his granddaughters. Businesses can best accommodate people by having single-occupancy, unisex bathrooms, he said.

He said it'south not about discrimination.

"I don't care what your sexual persuasion is. I don't wish children exposed to folks who don't know their identity," said Martin, R-Pickens.

But he said time constraints create it unlikely for the measure to pass this year. A May one deadline for bills to move from one chamber to the other looms.

The SC bill was sent to the committee chaired by Sen. Kevin Bryant, who also signed on as a co-sponsor. He was optimistic about the bill'south chances.

"I'm going to focus on the free-market approach," said Bryant, R-Anderson. "It'south not the government'south role to tell businesses how to configure their bathrooms."

House Speaker Jay Lucas' office declined to weigh in on the bill's chances in that chamber.

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