Illinois joins coalition of attorneys general opposing LGBT prohibitions in Indiana, Florida

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Illinois is joining other states in taking aim at legislation they say discriminates against LGBTQ students.

A coalition of attorneys general that includes Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul has filed a legal brief in opposition to an Indiana school district prohibiting a transgender student from using a restroom consistent with the student’s gender identify and one that opposes Florida’s so-called “Don’t Say Gay” law that limits school discussions about same-sex relationships.

The Indiana case, A.C. vs. Metropolitan School District of Martinsville, focuses on school district attempts to prohibit a 13-year-old transgender student from using the boys’ restroom. A brief filed on behalf of Raoul and 22 other attorneys general asks an appeals court to affirm a ruling against the school district.

Illinois is being joined by California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.

In the Florida filing, Raoul and other attorneys general are supporting a group of students, parents, teachers and organizations challenging enforcement of the law.

The law prevents classroom discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity and prohibits “classroom instruction” on sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through the third grade, while also requiring the state education agency to write new classroom instruction standards that must be followed by fourth- through 12th-grade teachers.

Raoul and the coalition maintain the Florida law is extreme and causes significant harm that can result in increased rates of mental health disorders and suicide attempts. He joins attorneys general from California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York and Oregon.

“Across the country, we are seeing increased attacks on the rights of LGBTQ+ youth,” Raoul said. “Discrimination has no place in the classroom — period. I will continue to work with fellow attorneys general from across the country to stand up for the rights of all students and will vehemently oppose unjust policies that jeopardize the education and emotional and physical well-being of LGBTQ+ students.”

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August 8, 2022 at 06:16PM

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