This week read about a borough in Pennsylvania aiming to repeal an ordinance that protects people against discrimination, and a bill that could restrict trans students' access to bathrooms in Virginia.
Pennsylvania Borough On Course of Repealing Anti-discrimination Ordinance
A borough in central Pennsylvania is on course to be the first municipality to repeal an anti-discrimination ordinance that protects people against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, ethnicity, or gender identity.
Those who support the ordinance, according to Penn Live, have said that now that the borough council has reached a conservative majority, it is flexing its power.
“I don’t know of any reasons for repealing it other than a political move,” said Alice Elia, former Chambersburg borough council president and Democrat. “This issue should not be politicized. It’s an issue of justice and having equal protection for everybody in our community. It shouldn’t be a political or a Democratic or Republican issue. This should be something we are all concerned about.”
The ordinance extended protections to gay, transgender or genderqueer people in employment, housing, and public accommodations and was past last October when the council had a Democratic majority.
“My concern is that it’s a big decision to overturn something like this,” Elia said. “It hasn’t happened before and for that to be something that is first on the table for people who have never held a position like this is a big thing to do.”
Bill Could Restrict Trans Students’ Access To Bathrooms At School
Photo via Pixabay.
John Avoli, a representative in the Virginia House of Delegates, introduced a bill that would make it so transgender students and faculty couldn’t use restrooms or other gendered facilities consistent with their gender identity.
The bill would require that “each school board to adopt policies to require each student and school board employee to have access to restrooms, locker rooms, and other changing facilities in public school buildings that are shared only by members of the same biological sex … and a single-user restroom, locker room, or other changing facilities in a public school building, upon request, if the school can reasonably accommodate such a request.”
Last month, another senator introduced Senate Bill 20, which would exempt schools from the Department of Education’s trans and non-binary student guidelines, the Washington Blade reported.
Equality Virginia, an LGBT advocacy group, wrote on its website that it opposes the bill and state delegate Danica Roem — the first openly trans person to hold a seat in a U.S. state legislature — said that it “would be dead on arrival.”