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KS lawmakers propose transgender bathroom bill

Posted: 4:03 PM, Apr 15, 2016
Updated: 2016-04-15 21:19:19Z
KS lawmakers propose transgender bathroom bill
KS lawmakers propose transgender bathroom bill

It's a piece of art that got people talking - a gender-neutral bathroom sign created by local artist Peregrine Honig.  The goal is to flush the idea of the bathroom bills that are sweeping the nation, including in Kansas and Missouri.

"We have got to decide if we are going to be progressive or regressive when it comes to the reality of having a group of citizens that deserve to be treated with respect," said Honig. "If people can't consider the humanitarian nature of this decision, then the fiscal losses will just follow suit."

Honig signs went viral after the artist posted pictures online. She is now selling these signs on her site, All Is Fair in Love and Wear.

 

What she refers to is state laws that could require transgender people to use restrooms on school campuses based on the biological sex they were born with rather than with the gender they associate.

"It's a basic human right to be able to go to the bathroom safely," she said. "Just because you are different looking, it doesn't mean you are deviant or sexually aggressive or that you will do something to make someone else uncomfortable."

Proponents of such bills say it's they who feel uncomfortable when someone of the opposite sex uses a gender-specific bathroom. They say these bills are meant to prevent other students from feeling any potential embarrassment, shame or psychological injury by sharing the restroom with people of the opposite biological sex.  

The bills are SB 513 and HB 2737.  They require public schools and universities to designate all restrooms, locker rooms and shower facilities used by more than one person at a time for only one gender, and for students to use the restroom that matches their sex at birth.

Students "who encounter a person of the opposite sex" in a restroom, locker room or shower facility could sue a school up to $2,500 plus damages for embarrassment, shame or psychological injury. The bill defines sex as being “determined by a person’s chromosomes and is identified at birth by a person’s anatomy.” 

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Terra Hall can be reached at terra.hall@kshb.com .

You can also follow her on Twitter .

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