Proposition 1 Supporters Challenge False Claims in Ad by Opponents of Equal Rights Ordinance

HOUSTON – Amid the national controversy around the ad campaign featuring Lance Berkman by opponents of Houston’s Equal Rights Ordinance, Houston Unites today released a line-by-line fact check of the ad.

“Most political ads have a kernel of truth, but this one I’m afraid doesn’t,” said Richard Carlbom, campaign manager for Houston Unites. “Current law – and common sense – states that it has always been and will always be illegal for a man to enter a women’s restroom. What Proposition 1 does do is provide a local tool to deal with discrimination and victimization based on gender, pregnancy, race, disability, and much more. All Houstonians should be treated fairly and equally under the law.”

The fact check:

AD CLAIM: “Proposition 1 would allow troubled men who claim to be women to enter women’s bathrooms, showers and locker rooms.”

WRONG. Indecent exposure, harassment and assault in restrooms is illegal and will remain illegal. Proposition 1 won’t change that. Prop 1 will NOT allow men to enter women’s restrooms and it won’t allow someone to escape prosecution for criminal behavior.

AD CLAIM: “It’s better to prevent this danger by closing women’s bathrooms to men rather than waiting for a crime to happen.”

IT’S ALREADY A CRIME! Women’s bathrooms are already closed to criminals.

AD CLAIM: “Join me to stop the violation of privacy and discrimination against women.”

A YES vote on Proposition 1 actually protects women from discrimination. Even in today’s world, women and moms continue to face sex discrimination and pregnancy discrimination on the job. Prop 1 provides a local tool to deal with discrimination and victimization based on gender, pregnancy and more.

A new web ad featuring several Houston moms and their children also takes on the ad’s claims about safety and discuss discrimination women face on the job and in housing.

“As wives, mothers, grandmothers, nothing is more important than keeping our children safe—and we take that very seriously.  We have been deeply disturbed by false claims made by the opponents of Proposition 1 about the ordinance’s impact on restroom privacy and safety. Proposition 1 protects women, children, and families.”

Yesterday, former MLB pitcher Joe Valentine issued a similar statement.

“I’m the father of two wonderful little girls and spent years as a major league pitcher,” said Valentine. “As a Dad, I would do anything to protect my daughters. As a major league ball player, Lance Berkman does not speak for me, or any of the other fair-minded guys in baseball. Berkman’s comments don’t reflect the facts. Proposition 1 will not allow men in women’s bathrooms. It simply allows everyone to work hard and be treated fairly, no matter who they are, and that includes transgender people.”

Houston Unites currently has a $400,000 ad buy on the air making the faith-based, pro-family case for voting Yes on Proposition 1.