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Black Republican lawmaker claims discrimination over bathroom bill

A Virginia state delegate who introduced a bill that would require public schools to check their bathrooms every 30 minutes for cleanliness and safety said his proposal was rejected by Democrats because of his race and party affiliation.

Bill aimed to prevent sexual assaults in school bathrooms

Delegate Glenn Davis, a Black Republican who represents parts of Virginia Beach, said he sponsored House Bill 257 because he wanted to protect students from potential sexual assaults in school bathrooms. He cited the recent case of a 15-year-old girl who was allegedly raped by a boy wearing a skirt in a Loudoun County high school restroom.

“I have a daughter who is in elementary school, and I don’t want her to be afraid to go to the bathroom,” Davis said. “I don’t want any child to be victimized by a predator who can easily access a bathroom that is not monitored or secured.”

Davis said his bill would require schools to assign staff members to inspect every bathroom in the school at least once every 30 minutes during school hours, and report any issues or incidents to the principal. He said the bill would also mandate schools to install locks on bathroom doors and post signs warning students not to enter the opposite sex’s bathroom.

Black Republican lawmaker claims discrimination over bathroom bill

Democrats accused of playing politics with children’s safety

Davis said he was shocked and disappointed when his bill was killed by a 13-9 vote in the House Education Committee on Monday. He said all 13 Democrats on the committee voted against his bill, while all nine Republicans voted for it.

He claimed that the Democrats opposed his bill because he is a Black Republican who does not fit their narrative of what a minority should be.

“They don’t like me because I don’t toe their line,” Davis said. “They don’t like me because I stand up for conservative values and principles. They don’t like me because I’m a Black man who is not afraid to speak his mind and challenge their agenda.”

Davis said the Democrats were more concerned about appeasing the LGBTQ community and the teachers’ union than protecting children from harm.

“They are putting politics over the safety and well-being of our kids,” Davis said. “They are pandering to special interest groups that want to push their radical ideology on our schools and our society. They are ignoring the voices of parents and taxpayers who want common sense solutions to the problems we face.”

Democrats deny racial or partisan bias

Democrats on the House Education Committee denied that they voted against Davis’ bill because of his race or party affiliation. They said they rejected his bill because it was unnecessary, impractical, and potentially harmful to students.

Delegate Schuyler VanValkenburg, a Democrat who represents parts of Henrico County, said there was no evidence that Davis’ bill would prevent sexual assaults in school bathrooms. He said the bill would create more problems than it would solve, such as disrupting the learning environment, violating students’ privacy, and increasing the workload of school staff.

“This bill is a solution in search of a problem,” VanValkenburg said. “It is based on fear and misinformation, not facts and data. It is a waste of time and resources that could be better spent on improving our schools and supporting our students.”

VanValkenburg said the Democrats were not against ensuring the cleanliness and safety of school bathrooms, but they believed that those issues should be handled by local school boards and administrators, not by state legislators.

“We respect the authority and autonomy of our local school divisions to make the best decisions for their communities,” VanValkenburg said. “We trust them to implement the appropriate policies and procedures to keep our students safe and healthy.”

VanValkenburg also said the Democrats were not discriminating against Davis because he is a Black Republican, but they were judging him based on the merits of his bill.

“We don’t care about his race or his party, we care about his policy,” VanValkenburg said. “We disagree with him on this issue, and we have the right to do so. That’s how democracy works.”


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