June 6, 2017
WASHINGTON, DC -- Family Research Council thanked Texas Governor Greg Abbott today for announcing a special session that will take up legislation protecting the privacy of women and children.
Earlier this year, Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, testified before the Texas Senate State Affairs Committee in support of the Texas Privacy Act (SB 6). The bill prevents public schools and government buildings from adopting policies that would open women's showers, bathrooms, and changing facilities to men and visa-versa. It also prevents political subdivisions from forcing businesses and organizations, including contractors, to open their showers, locker rooms and bathrooms to people of the opposite sex. It leaves businesses free to determine their own policies regarding the use of shared bathrooms and showers.
Polling earlier this year showed that the vast majority of Texans, including 80 percent of Republicans and 54 percent of Democrats, support commonsense privacy protections.
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins released the following statement:
"I applaud Governor Abbott for taking seriously the concerns of parents and the well-being of their children. The governor is acting in line with the views of most Texans who can agree that women and children should be free from unwanted intrusions into their privacy while using showers, restrooms, locker rooms, and changing rooms.
"It's important to emphasize that the threat does not primarily come from persons who identify as transgender, but rather comes from those who might exploit the situation by posing as transgender to gain easier access to (usually) women's bathrooms, where they can engage in voyeurism, indecent exposure, or even sexual assault.
"As a parent of five children, I am more than sympathetic to the sensitivity and the self-consciousness that students have in undressing in a school locker room, or taking a shower in front of their peers. It would be traumatic for many children and adolescents to do so in the presence of someone of the opposite biological sex.
"The governor wisely listened to the voters instead of hypocritical big business leaders. It's difficult to name a single company that has a policy allowing men in women's restrooms and changing rooms. Instead, they want the government to do what they are afraid to do because of public opposition. After all, no one wants to end up like Target -- a company that has taken a huge financial hit after sparking a 1.5 million-person boycott.
"We are very optimistic that this special session will produce a bill with common-sense privacy protections. Without a privacy law, a potential threat will remain not just from the federal government, but from local governments and school districts within Texas that might choose to adopt policies that elevate 'gender identity' over biological sex and thereby threaten the security and privacy of Texans," concluded Perkins.
Read Tony Perkins's full testimony: S.B. 6