An Alabama law banning transgender K-12 students from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity, while also banning discussing gender identity and sexual orientation , is now in effect, further limiting the rights of LGBT children in the state.
The law requires students in Alabama K-12 schools to use the bathroom of their “biological sex,” with enforcement and implementation rules left to schools without specific details in the bill on what a transgender student might face if they use a bathroom that matches their gender identity.
The law also restricts discussions of gender identity and sexual orientation in Alabama’s kindergarten through fifth grade classrooms. The bill describes these discussions as “not appropriate for the age or development of students in accordance with state standards.”
The law’s passage in the state’s previous legislative session in April was fraught with difficulties due to the broadening of the bill’s intent late in deliberations on the last day of the legislative session. Alabama State Sen. Shay Shelnutt, R-Trussville, introduced the amendment restricting classroom discussions about gender identity and sexual orientation, adding it to what was previously than a bill on public school toilets.
The move was condemned by the Alabama Democratic and a litany of different LGBTQ and civil rights organizations, each almost universally condemning the expanded bill as anti-transgender and damaging to teachers’ ability to lead classroom discussions. on topics relevant to society.
“In the final hours of the legislative session, Alabama’s anti-LGBTQ+ elected officials decided to use those precious minutes, not to pass legislation that improves our state, but to use that time to precipitate legislative attacks on our most vulnerable,” said Human Rights Campaign. Carmarion D. Anderson-Harvey, Alabama State Manager, in A declaration after the bill was passed in April. “These are not attempts to legislate against any type of issue, they are attempts to exploit divisive political issues for political gain within their radical base at the expense of children who are simply trying to navigate in their teenage years.”
With the law taking effect, Tennessee and Alabama are now the only two US states to restrict bathroom access for transgender K-12 students in public schools to bathrooms. baths corresponding to their birth sex.