Great things happening in the Texas State Capitol!
What does gender have to do with ride-hailing? Theoretically nothing, unless the Texas House of Representatives has a say.
A regular old ride-hailing bill in Texas took a turn on Wednesday when the Texas House voted in favor of an amendment that defines "sex" as "the physical condition of being male or female."
Republicans Briscoe Cain and Tony Tinderholt proposed the amendment, which modifies the section of the bill that prevents ride-hailing drivers from discriminating against passengers on the basis of "location or destination, race, color, national origin, religious belief or affiliation, sex, disability, or age."
Now, "sex" in that nondiscrimination clause is defined as "the physical condition of being male or female." The Texas House voted 90-52 in favor of the amendment. The bill is expected to easily pass.
Texas House votes 90-52 to adopt amendment to ride-hailing bill that defines "sex" as being a man or a woman. #HB100 #txlege
— Patrick Svitek (@PatrickSvitek) April 19, 2017
Besides this unexpected turn of events, the Texas bill proposed regulations for ride-hailing in the state that fell in the usual categories: background checks, fares, airport fees, requirements for drivers and their cars, privacy of passenger information, and the like.
The bill regulating ride-hailing statewide was of particular note since Austin, Texas, imposed its own regulations last year that prompted Uber and Lyft to leave the city. The bill would preempt local and city regulations in favor of the state’s terms.
Those terms now involved the definition of "sex" in the case of discrimination against a ride-hailing passenger.
For those just tuning in, yes. The House is considering an amendment to ride-hailing bill defining sex as "being male or female." #txlege
— Madlin Mekelburg (@madlinbmek) April 19, 2017