RALEIGH, N.C.—North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory today filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice that asks a federal court to determine that House Bill 2, the discriminatory law that removes local legal protections for LGBT people and prohibits transgender people from using public facilities that correspond to their gender identity, does not violate civil rights laws.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice notified Gov. Pat McCrory that the restroom provisions in HB 2 have placed the state in violation of Title VII of the U.S. Civil Rights Act, Title IX, and the Violence Against Women Act.
The American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU of North Carolina, and Lambda Legal—who are challenging House Bill 2 in federal court on behalf of six LGBT North Carolinians and members of the ACLU of North Carolina—released the following statement:
“While transgender people in North Carolina remain in the perilous position of being forced to avoid public restrooms or risk violation of state law, Governor McCrory has doubled down on discrimination against them. The federal government made clear that HB 2’s mandate of discrimination against transgender people violates federal civil rights laws but McCrory and other political leaders in the state have decided to risk federal funding to maintain that discrimination. Transgender people work for the state of North Carolina, attend school in North Carolina, and are a part of every community across the state. It is unconscionable that the government is placing a target on their backs to advance this discriminatory political agenda. Lawsuits are normally filed to stop discrimination—not to continue it.”
On April 20, 2016, Joaquín Carcaño, a plaintiff in the ACLU and Lambda Legal case, filed a charge alleging violations of Title VII with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
A copy of this press release can be found here: https://goo.gl/quSDRg.
In addition, GLSEN’s Director of Public Policy, Nathan Smith, condemned North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and the state’s legislative leaders for filing suit against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) after DOJ last week found the state’s discriminatory House Bill 2 to be in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
“The role of the Justice Department is to enforce federal law, and North Carolina leaders have clearly violated three major federal civil rights laws by passing and implementing HB 2. The lawsuit they filed in response to the Justice Department today further illustrates the unprecedented extent to which Gov. McCrory, President Pro Tem Berger and Speaker Moore are willing to go to advance their discriminatory agenda – wasting taxpayer dollars in court battles and playing a game of chicken with the federal government that risks costing the state billions of dollars in federal funds. Civil rights statutes exist to protect our nation’s most vulnerable. In this instance, those who face the gravest threats from the implementation of HB 2 are, unfortunately, North Carolina’s transgender students.
“Contrary to the governor’s claims, the issue of restroom and locker room access for transgender students is not a new one. School districts across the country have been providing such access for years without incident, many under state nondiscrimination laws that protect transgender people.
“Transgender students face many dire challenges, including bullying, harassment, discrimination, and even family rejection. Being a political football shouldn’t be one of them. GLSEN calls on North Carolina’s governor and state legislative leaders to stop further victimizing the state’s transgender students in their attempt to defend an illegal, unnecessary and discriminatory statute.”
The latest edition of GLSEN’s National School Climate Survey found that LGBT students who experienced discrimination and bullying and harassment at school were more than three times as likely to have missed school in the past month as those who did not, had lower GPAs than their peers, and had lower self-esteem and higher levels of depression. GLSEN has created model laws and policies for schools, districts and states to ensure LGBT students are safe and affirmed at school, including a model district policy for accommodating transgender and gender nonconforming students that complies with Title IX.
[From various news releases]