July 17, 2023

Munger, Tolles & Olson Files Federal Lawsuit Challenging Idaho School Facilities Law That Singles Out Transgender Students for Discriminatory Treatment

On July 6, 2023, Munger, Tolles & Olson, alongside Lambda Legal and Alturas Law Group, PLLC, filed a federal lawsuit against the Idaho State Superintendent of Education Debbie Critchfield and other Idaho school officials on behalf of a rising seventh-grade transgender student and an LGBTQ high school student organization challenging Idaho’s new school facilities law that singles out transgender students for discriminatory treatment. Plaintiffs also filed a motion for a preliminary injunction, seeking immediate relief to stop the law from being enforced as the academic school year approaches.

Idaho’s discriminatory facilities law, Senate Bill 1100, was signed by Idaho Gov. Brad Little on March 22, 2023, and went into effect on July 1, 2023. The law imposes a sweeping statewide mandate, governing all public and charter schools K-12, that schools must exclude transgender students from multi-user restrooms and other school facilities matching their gender identity, based on a legislative definition of “sex” as limited to chromosomes and reproductive anatomy. For many years, many schools across Idaho have adopted inclusive policies and practices (including those based on a model school board policy issued in 2015), which have allowed transgender students to use school facilities matching their gender identity.

The lawsuit, Roe v. Critchfield, was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho and argues that S.B. 1100 violates the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, by discriminating on the basis of sex and transgender status, and by outing students as transgender.

The MTO team working on the matter includes Katherine Forster, Robyn Bacon, Max Rosen, Nick Sidney, Paul Martin, Avery Hitchcock, and Jimmy Biblarz.

Read the press release to learn more.