Opponents of a new North Carolina law that bars transgender people from choosing bathrooms consistent with their gender identity sued the state on Monday, arguing the measure is unconstitutional and should be blocked by a federal court.
State lawmakers passed the law last week during a one-day special session called to repeal a Charlotte city ordinance that would have allowed bathroom choice based on gender identity versus sex at birth.
The Republican-led legislature also voted to prohibit local governments from enacting anti-discrimination protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The actions drew swift criticism from lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocacy groups and companies including American Airlines, Apple and Google.
“By singling out LGBT people for disfavored treatment and explicitly writing discrimination against transgender people into state law, (the state) violates the most basic guarantees of equal treatment and the U.S. Constitution,” said the lawsuit, which was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and Lambda Legal.