Federal judge blocks transgender bathroom bill enforcement at University of North Carolina

Source: Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

On Friday, a federal judge blocked the University of North Carolina from enforcing the state's so-called "bathroom bill," a portion of the state's HB2 law that prohibits transgender people from using restrooms that don't match the sex listed on their birth certificate, BuzzFeed News reported.

The preliminary injunction comes after the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the state on behalf of transgender individuals at UNC, arguing that the law violates both the Equal Protection clause of the Constitution as well as Title IX, which prohibits educational institutions receiving federal assistance from sex discrimination. 

In his ruling blocking the enforcement of the transgender bathroom provision of the law, U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Schroeder said that a "careful consideration" of the evidence showed that the law would cause transgender individuals at UNC to "suffer irreparable harm," according to the ruling published by BuzzFeed. 

He added that the plaintiffs are "likely to succeed on their claim" that the bathroom provision violates Title IX.

"Some transgender individuals have been quietly using bathrooms and other facilities that match their gender identity, without public awareness or incident," Schroeder wrote in the opinion.

Still, the ruling is not a total victory for opponents of HB2. 

Schroeder said in his ruling that the plaintiffs "have not made a clear showing that they are likely to succeed on their Equal Protection claim."

He also stressed that his ruling merely "returns the parties to the status quo ante as it existed" before the passage of HB2 in March of this year. 

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Emily C. Singer

Emily C. Singer, née Cahn, is a senior writer for Mic covering politics. She is based in New York and can be reached at esinger@mic.com

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