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Eleven US states sue President Obama over transgender bathroom guidelines

Texas and ten other states have challenged US President Barack Obama's directive regarding transgender bathroom access. The states are hoping the guidelines will be deemed unlawful.

Texas and ten other states on Wednesday sued the Obama administration for its directive requiring US public schools to give transgender students access to the restrooms and locker rooms of their choosing.

The lawsuit was also filed by Oklahoma, Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Louisiana, Tennessee, Maine, Utah and Georgia (but also the Arizona Department of Education). It accused Obama of "running roughshod over policies" that threatened children because it

allowed people to choose whichever restroom corresponded with their gender identity

.

Last month, the Obama administration issued the directive, sparking a nationwide debate. The states opposed to the guidelines are hoping a judge will declare them unlawful.

States digging in their heels

Many states have vowed not to adhere to the directive, with Texas' lieutenant governor even saying the state would rather lose $10 billion (9 billion euros) than comply.

The directive, which came from the US Justice and Education Departments, came after the Justice Department and the state of North Carolina

sued each other over a law

that required transgender people to use public bathrooms that matched the gender on their birth certificates.

Whereas opponents say the laws put women and children at risk, defenders argue the directive is meant to combat discrimination.

blc/jm (AFP, AP)

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