Florida bathroom law threatens penalizing transgender college faculty
Faculty and staff at public colleges in Florida could be fired for using the bathroom.
Why it matters: In a blow for transgender rights, the state's education board passed a rule on Wednesday that mandates people at these institutions to use the bathroom corresponding to their assigned sex at birth or a unisex bathroom.
- The rule also applies to changing facilities and university student housing.
- Student handbooks, disciplinary procedures and codes of conduct have to be updated with the new rules, although it is unclear how students might be reprimanded.
Threat level: Faculty and staff could be fired after two documented offenses, per the Florida Department of Education.
- "Disciplinary actions may utilize a progressive discipline process that includes verbal warnings, written reprimands, suspension without pay, and termination," the department said.
Context: The new rule is intended to comply with a law passed in May that criminalizes the use of bathrooms that don't align with a person's sex at birth.
- This bill and others targeting transgender people signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis were dubbed a "slate of hate" by activists.
- DeSantis has taken efforts to prohibit gender-affirming care for transgender youth in Florida.