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Transgender Access To Restrooms, Locker Rooms Spurs Impassioned Debate

Allowing transgender people access to the restroom or locker room of their choice stirs strong feelings. Advocates on both sides of that debate packed a hearing room in Olympia Wednesday. They testified on a Republican proposal to repeal a new state rule. That rule leaves the choice with the user and not the owner of the facility. Paul MacLurg owns a fitness center and supports the repeal.

MacLurg says,  “As a business owner part of my job is to make sure I maintain an environment where everyone feels safe and comfortable. Before this rule was in place the law allowed me to use my best judgment. Now I have no good choices, no protection from the law.”

Ryan Trainer argued to keep the rule allowing transgender access. He’s the parent of a young transgender daughter.

Trainer says, “This is our child, like everyone here we are doing our best to love her, support here and to keep her safe. She is deserving of respect and protection just like all of the children in Washington state. Please don’t take this way from her.”

The rule was enacted last month by Washington’s Human Rights Commission.