California transgender bill spurs initiative for ‘bathroom privacy’

Sacramento Bee – April 20, 2015

Opponents have opened up a new front in the fight against a California law allowing transgender students to use public school facilities such as bathrooms, showers and locker rooms that correspond to their gender identities.

Privacy For All, the group targeting Assembly Bill 1266, on Friday submitted a proposed 2016 initiative that would mandate people in government buildings use facilities in accordance with their biological sex. It would allow people who feel their privacy was violated – or who chose not to use a facility because of a violation of the measure – to sue the government or the individual for damages and attorney’s fees.

The Personal Privacy Protection Act, which would require 365,880 signatures to make the ballot, also aims to shield business owners from lawsuits for requiring that patrons and employees use bathrooms in accordance with their sex.

Privacy For All sued after then-Secretary of State Debra Bowen announced last year that the group came up several thousand signatures short of the number needed to qualify their repeal for the November 2014 ballot.

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