4 Massachusetts churches sue over transgender bathroom law

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BOSTON (AP) – A new state law that prohibits discrimination against transgender people in public restrooms is “punishing” the protected religious speech of churches and pastors, a conservative Christian organization claims in a federal lawsuit filed Oct. 11.

Alliance Defending Freedom, based in Scottsdale, Arizona, said it sued on behalf of four Massachusetts churches to protect their right to operate their facilities “in a manner that doesn’t violate their core religious beliefs.” The lawsuit names Democratic state Attorney General Maura Healey and members of the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination as defendants.

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ACC picks new sites for 8 championships pulled from NC

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GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) – The Atlantic Coast Conference selected new sites for eight of the championships it will move from North Carolina because of a law that restricts the rights of LGBT people.

Four championships are moving to Georgia, three more are headed to South Carolina and another is set for Kentucky, the league announced on Oct. 4.

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Another legal win for Wisconson trans student

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Ash-WhitakerKENOSHA, Wis. (AP) – A transgender student heads back to high school in Kenosha with the court’s permission to use bathrooms consistent with his gender identity.

A federal judge’s ruling Sept. 20, is the second legal victory in as many days for Ashton Whitaker. The Tremper High senior has gone to court with accusations the school district discriminated against him.

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Duke Energy CEO says utility avoiding North Carolina LGBT law fight

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CARY, N.C. (AP) — Duke Energy Corp. aims to stay out of the fight over North Carolina’s law limiting protections for LGBT people, the company’s CEO said, noting the company is heavily regulated by the state.

“I’m in a regulated industry with responsibility for keeping the lights on, and my focus is there and attracting a workforce that makes us better, and that’s a diverse workforce,” CEO Lynn Good told The Associated Press.

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ACC, NCAA latest blows for North Carolina governor’s re-election

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Gov. Pat McCrory frames the debate over North Carolina’s law about transgender people and restrooms as one of common sense and safety and privacy. Yet try as he might, he can’t shake the narrative from the law’s opponents of bigotry and intolerance.

The NCAA and Atlantic Coast Conference delivered the latest blows this week, stripping the state of lucrative championships and leaving the Republican with another bruise as he fights for his political life. Entering the final weeks of the nation’s most closely watched governor’s race, McCrory is trying to reset the focus for voters.

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North Carolina transgender restroom trail delayed

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – The trial over a North Carolina law restricting restroom access for transgender people is being pushed back by several months, attorneys challenging the law said Sept. 2.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Joi Elizabeth Peake granted a request from the state’s Republican leaders to delay the North Carolina trial while the U.S. Supreme Court considers whether to hear a Virginia case on transgender restroom access, according to a brief entry in the federal court docket.

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Citizen Group drops lawsuit over North Carolina restroom law

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A citizens group has dropped a lawsuit defending a North Carolina law governing transgender restroom access.

North Carolinians for Privacy filed a notice Aug. 31 that they were voluntarily dismissing their case, one of several pending in federal court.

The move will streamline the knot of litigation over the law. The state’s Republican leaders are continuing to defend the law in two other cases before the same judge, and trial is scheduled for November.

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Virginia school board asks high court to hear transgender bathroom case

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – A Virginia school board urged the U.S. Supreme Court on Aug. 29 to weigh in on whether a transgender male must be allowed to use the boys bathroom at his high school, framing it as an issue of national importance.

The Gloucester County School Board wants the justices to review a decision from the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which said the board’s policy barring 17-year-old Gavin Grimm from using the restroom that matches his gender identity violates Title IX, a federal law that prohibits discrimination in schools.

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Justice Department considering response to judge’s order blocking LGBT directive

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Justice Department is considering its options, now that a federal judge in Texas has blocked an Obama administration order concerning transgender students in public schools.

The administration had said schools have to let those students use locker rooms and bathrooms consistent with their chosen gender identity. But a judge has put that order on hold — saying that a federal education law makes it clear that gender is defined by “biological and anatomical differences” at birth.

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Judge in Texas temporarily blocks Obama’s transgender rules

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) – A federal judge in Texas is blocking for now the Obama administration’s directive to U.S. public schools that transgender students must be allowed to use the bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their chosen gender identity.

Hundreds of school districts woke up Aug. 22 to news of the order by U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor on the first day of class in Texas and elsewhere.

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Gender-neutral restrooms now available at Southeast Missouri State University

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) — Southeast Missouri State University has started offering gender-neutral bathrooms in what LGBT rights leaders are hoping is the first of several changes around campus.

The LGBT Advisory Board and the LGBT Advocacy Committee came up with a plan to create 35 of the restrooms for about $60 to $70 each, The Southeast Missourian reported.

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Republican Caitlyn Jenner not ‘outwardly’ supporting Trump

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Caitlyn Jenner says she backs the Republican party, but hasn’t “outwardly supported anybody” in the presidential race, including GOP nominee Donald Trump. She did express a preference for Ted Cruz’s candidacy, saying she would like to be his “trans ambassador.”

During an appearance on HBO’s Any Given Wednesday, Jenner said she wants “to help the entire Republican Party do a better job when it comes to LGBT issues.”

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