Battle for personal privacy in South Dakota & Seattle highlight threat posed by PA Bathroom Bill

February 19, 2016 | No comments | Posted in Religious Freedom | Tags: , ,

Freedom TourNever before did we think we’d have to battle for the right to privacy and safety in locker room and restroom facilities. But that’s exactly what’s being fought for across the country and it’s a big reason why we’ve launched our Freedom Tour – because if a state legislative proposal passes in Pennsylvania, we’ll lose our civil right to personal privacy in our communities.

A proactive measure to protect children in South Dakota awaits Governor’s signature, is now under attack.

The South Dakota state legislature just passed the Student Privacy Act (HB 1008). This would ensure schools maintain separate bathrooms, showers and locker rooms based on the students’ biological sex.

If a student objects to changing around people of the same biological sex as their own, the Student Privacy Act requires schools to accommodate that objecting student with access to a private uni-sex facility, like you would find in a home or on an airplane. The objecting student could choose to use the accommodation OR the restroom matching their biological sex, and the privacy of every student would be protected.

Some argue that it’s bigoted or “anti-transgender” to ask biologically males to refrain from using the biological female locker room.

But biological sex is the only valid reason to have separate showers and restrooms in the first place. Otherwise, we’d have one locker room. Maintaining separate restrooms on any other basis than biological sex is arbitrary and irrational.

But we’re seeing an irrational push for removing privacy rights. An example is one of the headlines from this morning’s Facebook newsfeed: Anti-transgender teen bill passes South Dakota.

South Dakota state legislators have taken a great step in protecting privacy rights. The last step for the Student Privacy Act to become state law is receiving the signature of Governor Dennis Daugaard.

Encourage Governor Daugaard to sign this bill.

Phone: 605-773-3212

We encourage you to call – opponents to personal privacy protection are pushing calls nationwide for the Governor not to sign. Simply encourage him to sign the Student Privacy Act, HB 1008, into law. This will protect all school-age kids and is good for all South Dakota citizens.


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Seattle man uses women’s locker room while girls youth swim team was changing, says new state policy makes it legal now.

The Human Rights Commission in Washington State, without a vote by elected officials or a public referendum, passed a policy that stripped away their citizens’ right to personal privacy.

The harmful results are already being seen. KREM Seattle reports a man undressed in a women’s public pool locker room while young girls were changing for swim practice. When the man was asked to leave, he replied, “the law has changed and I have a right to be here.

KidsA precedent to this harmful policy change was Washington State elected officials passing a law adding special status protections for “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” in anti-discrimination law, including public accommodations; such as pool locker rooms.

We can and must respect everyone without taking privacy away from anyone. Efforts to repeal this policy are underway; led by our sister organization – Family Policy Institute of Washington.

Sadly, stripping privacy rights away is not only happening in Washington State: 

State Supreme Court Fines Maine School District $75,000 For Permitting Biologically-Male Students to Use the Boys or Faculty Restroom, but Not the Girls Restroom.

In January 2014, the Supreme Court in Maine used their state’s law on “sexual orientation” discrimination as grounds to punish a school district for denying a biologically-male student the use of the girls’ restroom.

The school district had made a reasonable accommodation offer to the student, who could use all of the facilities for those of the same biological sex, or use a faculty restroom if the student preferred. According to the State Supreme Court, anything less than permitting the student to use facilities of the opposite sex was discriminatory based on Maine state law.

Under Maine law, it is now illegal to have biologically distinct restrooms, showers and locker rooms, and in this unprecedented case, the school was fined $75,000.

Pennsylvania’s HB 1510 & SB 974 would make it illegal to maintain separate locker rooms, showers and restrooms based on biological sex.

These “bathroom bills” present an attack on the personal privacy of Pennsylvanians. This proposal would mandate public accommodations in schools, restaurants, malls, health clubs, etc., forcing them to open their locker rooms, showers and restrooms to both biological sexes, based on the sex with which the individual identifies.

If you want to protect your personal privacy rights, while you still can:

1) Contact your State Senator and State Representative to oppose HB 1510 & SB 974.

2) In addition, some school districts in Pennsylvania are permitting students to use showers, locker rooms and bathrooms of the opposite biological sex. Some are doing this without even telling students or parents that they’ve banned biologically distinct personal facilities.

Contact your local school district and find out what their personal privacy policy is on locker rooms and restrooms. Encourage them to respect the dignity of all people by maintaining appropriate personal privacy rights in places where a person’s biological sex is relevant, such as in restrooms, showers, locker rooms and overnight accommodations on school sponsored trips.

And if they currently permit students to use facilities of the opposite biological sex, contact our team of experts to guide you in what you can do about it. Just call 1-800-FAMILY-1 or 717-545-0600 or send an email to mail@pafamily.org.

2016 Freedom Tour Dates

Our expert team is holding several events to help you understand how to protect your religious freedoms against attacks like Pennsylvania’s Bathroom bills.

  • Wednesday, March 2 – Cornerstone Ministries, Murrysville, PA
  • Thursday, March 3 – Western PA Christian Legal Society, Downtown Pittsburgh
  • Saturday, March 5 – Macedonia Baptist Church, Duquesne, PA
  • Saturday, March 5 – Central Assembly of God, Houston, PA
  • Sunday, March 6 – New Covenant Presbyterian Church, Monroeville, PA

For more details, visit pafamily.org/2016/02/freedomtour


ACTION RECAP

1. Call South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard and encourage him to sign the Student Privacy Act. Phone: 605-773-3212

2. Contact your State Senator and State Representative to oppose HB 1510 & SB 974.

3. Attend a Freedom Tour event and learn how you can protect your religious freedoms in Pennsylvania.

4. Contact your local school district and find out what their personal privacy policy is on locker rooms and restrooms. Encourage them to respect the dignity of all people by maintaining appropriate personal privacy rights in places where a person’s biological sex is relevant, such as in restrooms, showers, locker rooms and overnight accommodations on school sponsored trips.


 

The Pennsylvania Family Council provides a platform for informing and coordinating with those who care deeply about liberty and the cultural and societal issues that affect the family. This non-profit organization is supported by private donations from its many supporters across the Commonwealth. Click here to make a secure online donation to support our pro-life, pro-family work.

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