RALEIGH, N.C., March 28 (UPI) — The American Civil Liberties Union is preparing to challenge a new North Carolina law it says harms the LGBT community.
The law is a response to a Charlotte ordinance allowing transgender people to use restrooms of the sex with which they identify. The state law obligates them to use the restroom of their biological gender and also leaves the ability to pass non-discrimination laws almost entirely to the state.
Opponents of the state law contend it denies local governments the opportunity to create non-discrimination policies to protect members of the LGBT community.
The bill passed the state House 82-26 and the Senate, after a walkout by Democratic members, by 32-0 before McCrory, a Republican, signed it.
Lambda Legal, a national gay rights legal group, and Equality North Carolina, a state advocacy group are joining the ACLU in the filing of the lawsuit. The new law has been condemned by gay rights advocates and businesses, including Apple, American Airlines and PayPal.
The ACLU added the law jeopardizes more than $4.5 billion in federal funds North Carolina receives for secondary and post-secondary schools under Title IX, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in schools receiving federal funding.
“We are disappointed that Governor McCrory did not do right by North Carolina’s families, communities, and businesses by vetoing this horribly discriminatory bill, but this will not be the last word. The ACLU, Lambda Legal, and Equality NC are reviewing all options, including litigation.” said Chris Brook, legal director of the ACLU of North Carolina in a statement.