During the 86th Texas Legislative Session, Representatives Mary González, Jessica González, Julie Johnson, Erin Zwiener, and Celia Israel formed the first-ever Texas House LGBTQ+ Caucus. This came one legislative session after Texas Republicans advocated heavily for an anti-transgender bathroom bill.
During the caucus’ first session, they were on the defensive making sure anti-LGBTQ+ legislation did not pass. They were quite successful with only one anti-equality bill passing, SB 1978, or known as the ‘Save Chick-fil-A’ bill. For the 87th Legislative Session, these lawmakers are planning to file a variety of bills aimed to make Texas law more friendly toward the LGBTQ+ community.
Caucus Chair Mary González plans on re-filing legislation to ensure laws protect same-sex teen couples.
“The age of consent in Texas is 17 years old. But the state’s child indecency statute provides an affirmative defense protecting older teens in consensual relationships. They must also both be over 14 years old and within three years of age of each other. But those protections only apply to opposite-sex couples.” – Reena Diamante/ Spectrum Local News
As the caucus prepares its legislative agenda for the 87th Legislative Session, follow their Facebook and Twitter pages, and support LGBTQ+ candidates running for the Texas House this November.