Transgender bathroom bill passes out of Senate committee

A bathroom bill filed in response to a federal directive has passed out of an Oklahoma Senate committee. (KOKH/Keaton FOX)

A bill making it illegal for someone to use a bathroom of the opposite gender of their biological sex has passed out of an Oklahoma Senate committee.

Senate Bill 1619, authored by President pro tempore of the Senate Brian Bingman and Speaker of the House Jeff Hickman, passed out of the Senate Join Committee on Appropriations and Budget by a vote of 20-15.

The bill was filed in response to a federal directive that instructed schools on how to deal with transgender students. Under the proposal, students or parents could apply to their school board for a religious accommodation to use a restroom, athletic changing facility or shower designated for the exclusive use of those whose sex at birth matches the student's own.

Schools providing single-occupancy facilities would not count as an allowable accommodation under the bill.

It now heads to the Senate floor. The bill is not related to a Senate Concurrent Resolution that called for the U.S. House of Representatives to file articles of impeachment against President Obama in response to the directive.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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