Mazy Gilleylen just wants to be treated like any other 11-year-old girl. She wants to keep using the girls’ restroom, as she’s been doing for the past four years.
Senate Bill 98 would put an end to that routine. It would require her and other transgender students to use the bathroom that aligns with their biological sex.
“I just want to be able to go in, use the restroom with the doors closed, and wash my hands,” Mazy said with her mother at her side. “I don’t want to hurt anyone, and I don’t want anyone to hurt me.”
Mazy testified to a packed hearing room Tuesday, Feb. 21, at the Missouri Capitol. Dressed in a bright purple shirt and with a hot pink clip-in highlighting her long brown hair, she walked up to the front of the hearing room with a timid smile to address the state senators lined up before her.
The crowd included a number of children, officials and advocacy organizations. Three people spoke in favor of the bill, arguing for a right to privacy. More than 20 spoke in opposition, several of them crying — including children.
The legislation would apply to all public schools, from elementary school through college, according to bill sponsor State Sen. Ed Emery (R-Lamar). It states that other accommodations would be made for students with different gender identities.