SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — A new bill advancing through the Illinois statehouse would allow all multiple-occupancy bathrooms in the state to be designated for use by persons of any gender.
House Bill 1286 follows the Equitable Restrooms Act signed by Gov. JB Pritzker in 2019 that made all single-occupancy restrooms gender-neutral.
The new bill says its purpose is “to promote the privacy, safety, and gender inclusivity of all Illinois residents and visitors.”
According to The Center Square, Rep. Katie Stewart (D-Edwardsville), who filed the bill, the law would not create a requirement that businesses make their public restrooms gender-neutral.
“It creates the opportunity for places, businesses, universities, you name it, to create a multi-stall gender-neutral restroom,” Stuart said. “It lays out requirements for what is in that facility like locking mechanisms, privacy, disposal for menstrual products and all those types of things.”
The law would require any gender-neutral toilet stall be separated by dividers and have a functioning lock on the door.
Rep. Charlie Meier (R-Highland) voiced objection, saying, “I’m thinking of large arenas where you have people stacked high and low, and you only have so much space. A lot of people will not want to go into an all-gender restroom.”
The bill awaits further action in the House.