Sunday, 17 December, 2017

Texas Senate approves 'religious refusal' adoption measure

Texas House Passes 'Bathroom Bill' That Targets Transgender Students Texas Bathroom Bill: Legislators Pass Two Anti-LGBT Bills on 'Discrimination Sunday'
Connie Andrews | 23 May, 2017, 10:58

The measure passed 91-50 in the form of an amendment, tacked onto Senate Bill 2078, which relates to schools' "multi-hazard operating plans", and is a stripped-down version of the so-called "bathroom bill", Senate Bill 6.

Senate Bill 6, the dreaded "bathroom bill", has been rearing its ugly head all session, but the House was doing a good job keeping it at bay. Republican Senator Charles Perry said his bill "is not discriminatory", while Republican Senator Van Taylor said "a parent has a right to raise their child in the religion they see fit".

"This is about accommodating all kids", he said.

Texas state legislators reached a compromise late Sunday on a controversial measure to bar transgender people from using the bathrooms of their choice after months of pressure from business and civil rights groups aimed at killing the bill. "White. Colored. I was living through that era ... bathrooms divided us then, and it divides us now", she said on Sunday. "Separate but equal is not equal at all", she said.

Added Hefner, "I was proud to vote for Rep. Paddie's bathroom amendment yesterday". "Some people don't want to admit that because they are ashamed, and this is shameful".

Only one Democrat joined the Senate's 20 Republicans in voting for the bill.

Hundreds of businesses and several Texas chambers of commerce, celebrities and performers, tourism groups and events and sports organizations including the National Basketball Association, the NFL and the NCAA have spoken out against legislation targeting transgender people for discrimination.

That order would seal their criminal records from public view, but the bill allows law enforcement agencies and a few others to view the records when necessary, the sponsors said.

The bill includes other provisions, protecting the rights of foster and adoptive parents to send their children to religious schools and ensuring that there would be no "adverse action" against a foster parent or adoptive parent who refuses to help a child acquire birth control or an abortion.

In a statement released ahead of the House vote, Jennifer Pizer of Lambda Legal said the LGBT legal advocacy group would "be on the case before the next school bell rings" if Texas lawmakers "forced discrimination into Texas law". If the Senate agrees to the bill and Texas Governor Greg Abbott declines to veto it, Texas will become the second state in the United States to pass such legislation. Many kids spoke about the "horrifying" bullying and abuse they've already faced when forced to use a school bathroom of their biological sex. "Members of the House wanted to act on this issue and my philosophy as Speaker has never been to force my will on the body", Straus, a San Antonio Republican, said in a statement.

If the House passes the measure, it will return to the Senate for consideration of changes made since it was in that chamber.

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