US: Florida bill would make it illegal for transgender people to use public toilets

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A bill has been submitted in Florida that would make it a crime for transgender people to use public toilets.

Miami Republican Frank Artiles submitted a bill to the Florida House of Representatives yesterday, which would make it a crime for trans people to use single-sex facilities in workplaces, schools or any business that is open to the public.

Trans people who violate the law could be jailed for up to a year, charged with a misdemeanour and fined $1000.

The bill would apply to “bathrooms, restrooms, dressing rooms, fitting rooms, locker rooms and showers” – meaning trans people would be unable to go to the toilet, shop, or go to the gym.

HB 538 states: “The purpose of this act is to secure privacy and safety for all individuals using single-sex public facilities.

“Single-sex public facilities are places of increased vulnerability and present the potential for crimes against individuals using those facilities, including, but not limited to, assault, battery, molestation, rape, voyeurism, and exhibitionism.

“Sex means a person’s biological sex, either male or female, at birth.

“Single-sex public facilities designated for girls, women, ladies, or persons of the female sex shall be restricted to persons who are biological females.

“Single-sex public facilities designated for boys, men, gentlemen, or persons of the male sex shall be restricted to persons who are biological males.

“A person who knowingly and willfully enters a single-sex public facility designated for or restricted to persons of the other biological sex commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.”

The proposed law is strikingly similar to satirical musical Urinetown, in which the establishment regulates and aggressively cracks down on toilet use.