Doe v. Arrisi, et al. (USA)

A New Jersey transwoman, identified in the complaint as Jane Doe, has filed a lawsuit seeking to amend the state’s requirement that an individual undergo sexual reassignment surgery (“SRS”) before receiving an altered birth certificate reflecting the individual’s “gender identity or expression.”  According to the complaint, “The Statute’s requirement harms Plaintiff by forcing her to undergo surgery that she does not want and forces Plaintiff to sterilize herself before she is allowed a correct birth certificate.”  The suit further alleges discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), claiming that gender dysphoria (“GD”) “is a disability within the meaning of the ADA in that it substantially impairs one or more major life activities,” and that the “Defendants’ actions under the Statute discriminate against those trans people diagnosed with GD who have not undergone SRS as the Statute refuses accurate identification documents, a benefit provided to those individuals who are not trans people diagnosed with GD.”
Julie Chovanes of Trans-Help, one of the attorneys representing Doe, recently settled a similar case filed in the state of Pennsylvania seeking to eliminate the requirement for SRS in order to receive an altered birth certificate.
Transgender Plaintiff Seeks Easier Revision to Birth Certificate — New Jersey Law Journal
Seeking to change birth certificate without gender surgery, trans woman sues N.J. —
Doe v. Arrisi (USA) — complaint

State of Texas v. United States of America (USA)

U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor has issued an order denying a stay of his ruling in a case challenging the “Dear Colleague” letter issued on May 13 by several departments of the federal government. The plaintiffs, the state of Texas and 12 other states, claim the “interpretation of “sex” in the various written directives (collectively “the Guidelines”) as applied to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”) and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) is unlawful and has placed [the plaintiffs] in legal jeopardy.”  On August 21, Judge O’Connor granted the plaintiffs a preliminary injunction, barring the defendants from enforcing “the Guidelines’ interpretation of sex as including gender identity.”  On November 20, he denied a request for a partial stay of his ruling, stating “The federal government did not articulate, much less enforce, the Guidelines’ interpretation of sex as including gender identity for nearly fifty years after Title VII was passed in 1964 and the Court views this delay as strong evidence that Defendants will suffer no irreparable injury if a stay is denied and enforcement of the Guidelines delayed until their legality is established.”
Court won’t stay decision against trans student protections — Washington Blade
State of Texas v. United States of America (USA) — order denying partial stay
State of Texas v. United States of America (USA) — order granting preliminary injunction

Isaac v Duval County Public Schools (USA)

U.S. District Judge Marcia Morales Howard has dismissed a lawsuit filed in May by Wryshona Isaac on behalf of her four young children.  Isaac’s complaint against Duval County Public Schools (FL) “seeks declaratory and injunctive relief against Defendants for adopting and establishing a policy of allowing students an unfettered right to use the bathroom or changing facility of their choice based on “gender identity.” Plaintiff contends that the actions of Defendants denies her children a safe and supportive environment that would allow them to thrive and grow, and deprives them of the right to bodily privacy.”  According to Isaac’s attorney, the case was dismissed “because the U.S. Supreme Court is taking up a similar case [G.G. v Gloucester County School Board] and a federal judge in Texas is prohibiting President Barack Obama’s directive that schools allow students the bathroom leeway from being enforced.”
Issac v Duval County Public Schools (USA) — Complaint
Lawsuit against Duval Public Schools for allowing transgender bathroom privileges dismissed — The Florida Times-Union

OutFront Minnesota v Emily Johnson Piper, et al (USA)

Minnesota District Court Judge William Leary issued a ruling on November 14 in a case challenging the state’s 2005 law which banned Medicaid Assistance coverage for “all sex-assignment surgery.”  His ruling overturns the law, stating “the Minnesota Department of Human Services … are now permanently enjoined from denying Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare benefits to eligible transgender patients in need of medically necessary treatment, including transition-related surgery.”
Judge Overturns Minnesota Ban On Transgender Health Care Coverage — Logo
OutFront Minnesota v Emily Johnson Piper, et al (USA)

Fort Des Moines Church of Christ v. Iowa Civil Rights Commission, et al (USA)

Following the Iowa Civil Rights Commission’s publication of a brochure titled “Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity:  A Public Accommodations Provider’s Guide to Iowa Law” which stated that churches are subject to laws governing sex-segregated spaces “[w]here qualifications are not related to a bona fide religious purpose … e.g. a child care facility at a church or a church service open to the public,” the Fort Des Moines Church of Christ (“FDMCC”) filed a complaint seeking declaratory and injunctive relief.  According to attorneys representing FDMCC, “[t]he commission’s application of the law censors the church’s teaching on biblical sexuality and forces the church to open its restrooms and showers to members of the opposite sex under certain conditions that the government dictates.”
On October 14, 2016 U.S. District Court Judge Stephanie Rose issued an order “denying the Commission’s motion to dismiss the suit, while also denying the Fort Des Moines Church of Christ’s (FDMCC) request for an injunction.”  Satisfied with this decision, attorneys representing FDMCC voluntarily dropped their lawsuit, stating ““The Iowa commission’s guidance was vague and empowered government bureaucrats far beyond what the constitution allows. The court cut off this unconstitutional power grab by clarifying that the law does not apply to churches and reassured Iowa churches that they are free from improper state interference.”
Legal Challenge Dropped After Court Declares Gender Identity Laws Don’t Apply to Churches — October 17, 2016
Fort Des Moines Church of Christ v. Iowa Civil Rights Commission, et al — October 14, 2016
Iowa Civil Rights Commission — brochure

Chyanne Smith v. T.J. Maxx (USA)

Chyanne Smith, a male who identifies as a transgender woman, has filed a federal complaint against former employer T.J. Maxx “for discriminating against her because she is a transgender woman by subjecting her to a hostile work environment and retaliating against her for her complaints of discrimination by terminating her employment, in violation of the New York City Human Rights Law.”  According to the complaint, shortly after beginning work at T.J. Maxx Smith was “immediately met with hostility because she is transgender” in the form of “derogatory comments about Ms. Smith’s gender identity.”  Although Smith claims to have submitted complaints to management “nothing was done, and the discriminatory treatment continued.”  Smith’s employment was terminated less than a month after hiring, “purportedly for “falsifying records” in regards to her background check,” an action Smith asserts was “retaliation for her complaints of discriminatory treatment.”  Smith is seeking punitive damages in excess of $75,000.
Transgender T.J. Maxx Worker Allegedly Called ‘He-She,’ ‘Shim’ — Bloomberg BNA
Smith v. T.J. Maxx (USA) — Complaint filed November 10, 2016

Albert Allen Brown, a.k.a. Aliea Rose Brown (USA)

Albert Allen Brown, a 28-year-old male who identifies as a transgender woman and who is a registered sex offender, has been charged with raping a 15-year-old girl.  Brown had been living with the 15-year-old girl, the girl’s mother, and her mother’s boyfriend, who were allegedly aware of the nature of Brown’s predatory relationship with the girl.  According to court documents, police were investigating a report that the mother’s boyfriend had “exposed himself” to the girl on multiple occasions when they discovered that Brown had been sleeping in the girl’s room.  The affidavit further explains that the girl and Brown were “in a romantic and sexual relationship” and that “the Defendant was introducing [the girl] into the “lifestyle.”  Detective Mayland determine that the “lifestyle” refers to people who participate in and engage in BDSM.”  According to the girl, who initially denied “that she was involved in a romantic or sexual relationship” with Brown, “We used condoms… We thought it was okay as long as we had consent from our parents.”  However, as Brown states in the court documents, “I know it’s illegal.”  Although Brown has been ordered not to have any further contact with the girl, no arrest has been made.
Manhattan sex offender facing new rape charge — Bozeman Daily Chronicle
Montana woman charged with raping a minor – KTVQ
State of Montana v. Aliea Rose Brown — Nov 17, 2016

Calgaro v. St Louis County, et al. (USA)

On November 15, Minnesota resident Anmarie Calgaro filed a lawsuit against St Louis County, several nonprofits, and others, including J.D.K., her 17-year-old son who identifies as transgender.  Ms. Calgaro’s complaint alleges “Minnesota common law allows for the emancipation of minor children. However, while the law provides no distinct process for emancipation, there is no process for a parent to protect their fundamental parental rights to make decisions concerning the care, custody and control of their children.”  While J.D.K. is considered an emancipated minor in St Louis County, the complaint emphasizes that “[t]he letter of emancipation J.D.K. obtained from a legal aid service agency is not a court order.“  Ms. Calgaro alleges she has subsequently been denied access to her child’s school and medical records, and that under Minnesota’s “emancipation law” she “has no statutory or common law cause of action to (1) challenge Defendant St. Louis County Public Health and Human Service’s eligibility determination to pay for and/or approve payment of J.D.K.’s medical services at Park Nicollet and Fairview without parental consent, nor (2) to challenge Defendants Park Nicollet’s and Fairview’s determination of emancipation of J.D.K. to provide medical services without parental consent.”  Ms. Calgaro is seeking declaratory and injunctive relief, a jury trial, and damages in excess of $50,000 for violation of her federal due process rights and “loss of wages, personal injury and emotional distress.”
Minnesota Mom Sues Her Transgender Daughter For Receiving Hormone Treatments — Talking Points Memo 
Minnesota Mom Sues Her Trans Child Over Gender Reassignment — NBC News
Calgaro v. St Louis County, et al. (USA) — complaint

Prescott v. Rady Children’s Hospital – San Diego (USA)

The National Center for Lesbian Rights, along with the Transgender Law Center and several other attorneys, have filed a lawsuit against Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego (“RCHSD”) on behalf of Katharine Prescott and her deceased child, seeking “to recover damages for the harms done to her and her deceased son, and for injunctive relief so that in the future RCHSD will provide appropriate, nondiscriminatory care to all of its patients, regardless of sex, gender identity, and/or disability.”  Kyler Prescott, a 15-year-old who identified as a transgender boy, committed suicide on May 18, 2015, less than two months after “Katharine took Kyler to be seen at … RCHSD for suicidal ideation related to his gender dysphoria and to treat serious self-inflicted lacerations.”  The lawsuit alleges “RCHSD discriminated against Kyler, resulting in his inability to access necessary services and treatment during a dire medical crisis,” and “further alleges that the use of female references exacerbated his condition and that he thereafter had further difficulties and ultimately committed suicide.”
Transgender Teenager’s Death Leads to ACA § 1557 Discrimination Suit Against Hospital — The National Law Review
Prescott v Rady Children’s Hospital – San Diego (USA) — Complaint

Governor Pat McCrory — North Carolina H.B. 2 (USA)

On March 28, three transgender residents of North Carolina, along with the ACLU and Equality North Carolina, filed a lawsuit against NC Governor Pat McCrory, NC Attorney General Roy Cooper III, the University of North Carolina and its board members in a complaint seeking to challenge “a sweeping North Carolina, House Bill 2 (“H.B. 2”), which bans transgender people from accessing restrooms and other facilities consistent with their gender identity and blocks local governments from protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (“LGBT”) people against discrimination in a wide range of settings.”  Legal action is currently on hold pending a ruling in G.G vs. Gloucester County School Board before the U.S. Supreme Court.  However, the Defendants have filed a request for “access for up to 10 years’ worth of records for the plaintiffs and their witnesses” and “…have cited controversial scientific studies that claim someone describing themselves as transgender is likely experiencing a mental disorder in which their gender identity could fluctuate from how they feel any given day.”  The Plaintiffs filed a request for a protective order on October 20, claiming “the request constitutes “harassment” and an attempt to intimidate them and potential witnesses.”
In HB2 suit, GOP leaders want plaintiff health records; Judge to decide today — Winston-Salem Journal
Pat McCrory @PatMcCroryNC & HB 2 (USA) — GIW
North Carolina & Pat McCrory @PatMcCroryNC (USA) — GIW
ACLU and Equality North Carolina v. Governor Pat McCrory —complaint