Oklahoma bathroom bill halted
Update: The bill has been resurrected in the House. Updates to come.
Earlier today, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Freedom Oklahoma wrote a memo addressed to the Oklahoma State Legislature and Gov. Fallin reading in part, "SB 1619 puts Oklahoma schools at odds with federal law, risking the state the loss of the nearly two billion dollars that Oklahoma schools receive in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Education."
The bill could have required school districts to provide separate restrooms for students who object to sharing restrooms with transgender students.
In a press statement this afternoon from Freedom Oklahoma, The Gayly has been informed that leadership the Oklahoma State House of Representatives will not move SB 1619 forward this session.
"We are proud of the fair-minded legislators who stopped this madness at the Capitol, but this bill should have never been proposed in the first place," said Freedom Oklahoma executive director, Troy Stevenson. "We have spent two weeks fighting over where school kids can pee, rather than making sure we can fund their education."
Yesterday, both the Tulsa Regional Chamber and Greater Oklahoma City Chamber warned state lawmakers of "severe economic damage" that could result from the measure.
Under the bill, students could have applied for a religious accommodation to use a restroom or locker room designed for exclusive use by those whose sex at birth matches the student's own.
Stevenson added in closing, "Freedom Oklahoma will stay vigilant in making sure there are no more 11th hour attempts to harm LGBTQ Oklahomans."
Freedom Oklahoma is Oklahoma's statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization.
The Gayly - 5/24/2016 @ 3:50 p.m. CDT