In the last year, America has lost its damn mind over transgender people’s ability to use bathrooms that match their gender identity.
Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee made the erroneous assertion that allowing trans people in bathrooms that align with their gender identity will pave the way for voyeurism and sexual assault. There's also fear-mongering against Houston’s failed ‘bathroom bill,’ and droves of people have boycotted Target because of its policy on trans folks.
Oh, and of course there's North Carolina’s straight-up ban of trans people using gender identity-matching government bathrooms and changing rooms.
And now we know exactly how harmful this bathroom policing has become for transgender people. It’s much worse than you thought.
Here’s a breakdown from the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey:
59% have avoided bathrooms in the last year because they feared confrontations in public restrooms at work, at school, or in other places.
12% report that they have been harassed, attacked, or sexually assaulted in a bathroom in the last year.
31% have avoided drinking or eating so that they did not need to use the restroom in the last year.
24% report that someone told them they were using the wrong restroom or questioned their presence in the restroom in the last year.
9% report being denied access to the appropriate restroom in the last year.
8% report having a kidney or urinary tract infection, or another kidney-related medical issue, from avoiding restrooms in the last year.
That’s right: beyond the harassment and assault trans people face when using public restrooms, America’s bathroom access debate is literally giving trans people health issues. Literally.
With nearly 28,000 adult respondents, the 2015 survey conducted by the National Center for Transgender Equality is the largest survey of transgender people ever conducted.
This month, the center released these preliminary findings, with the full report’s release anticipated in the fall. The survey is a follow up to the National Transgender Discrimination Survey conducted over 2008 and 2009, which surveyed nearly 6,500 respondents.
"This data demonstrates why it is crucial for transgender people to be able to use the bathroom that matches their gender identity," the findings read.
We could not agree more.