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Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Who left the toilet seat up?

That's right folks, your ever faithful servant doesn't know anymore whether to leave the seat up ....., or put it down !

Protesters placed toilet seats on the steps of Parliament Hill Tuesday as they rallied against the so-called “Bathroom Bill” that would prevent transgender people from using single-sex washrooms and change rooms.

Organizers and participants are using the #occupotty hashtag to track the movement sparked by a Conservative senator’s amendment to Bill C-279, a private member’s bill that would add “gender identity” to the Criminal Code and the Canadian Human Rights Act.

Sen. Donald Plett’s amendment would essentially prevent transgender people from entering single-sex washrooms, change rooms or abuse shelters under federal jurisdiction.

“Occupotty” organizers are asking people to bring toilets or a toilet seat to Parliament Hill in protest of the so-called “Bathroom Bill.”

Plett has argued that his amendment would protect victims of domestic violence from being retraumatized by the sight of a biological male in a washroom. He also said it would prevent male sexual predators dressed up as females from gaining access to women and girls.

Anne Lowthian, one of the organizers of Tuesday’s protest in Ottawa, said Plett’s stance shows “a distinct lack of understanding of the issues facing transgender people in Canada.”

“It’s offensive because it equates sexual deviance or predatory behaviour with gender identity, which is completely illogical,” Lowthian, a mother of a transgender child, told CTV News Channel.

Lowthian said activists have been asking Plett to revoke his amendment, but have not heard from him directly.

Lowthian said the #occupotty movement began with Brae Carnes, a young Victoria, B.C. resident who identifies as a transgender woman.A few months ago, Carnes started taking selfies in men's washrooms and posting them on social media.

With files from The Canadian Press