'Bathroom Surveillance' Bills Criticized for Targeting Transgender People in U.S.

Amid the national uproar over "religious freedom" legislation that critics say permits discrimination against gay people, there is also growing controversy over bills criticized for being "anti-transgender." Lawmakers have proposed such bills in at least 12 states around the United States so far this year, ranging from Massachusetts to Oklahoma. Alison Gill, a senior legislative counsel at LGBT civil-rights advocacy group Human Rights Campaign, told Mashable, "The number of anti-transgender bills we are seeing in 2015 is much higher than we have seen in previous years." Vincent Paolo Villano, communications director at the National Center for Transgender Equality, added, "In a lot of ways, the anti-LGBT bills are a reaction based out of fear and misunderstandings of who transgender people are."