North Carolina Students, Parents File Lawsuit in Bid to End Federal Government Withholding of Funds

By Staff Writer | May 12, 2016 12:05 PM EDT

A group of students and parents joined in a legal battle over the controversial North Carolina bathroom bill. The Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian nonprofit from Arizona represents the group on behalf.

According to News Observer, the lawsuit was filed on Tuesday at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina, with the plaintiffs called themselves as North Carolinians for Privacy. The group named the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Education as defendants.

On the lawsuit, it seeks the court to declare that the federal agencies "exceeded their authority by redefining "sex" in the Title IX non-discrimination law." It also argues that the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Education had improperly held that provisions of federal law banning discrimination in education settings on the basis of sex applied to gender identity and threatening North Carolina by withholding education funding.

The Reading Eagle cited that an ongoing legal battle is happening between the U.S. Justice Department and state officials as the LGBT community are also fighting for their rights in the country. The plaintiffs are made up of the students from the University of North Carolina and from other schools in elementary middle and high schools levels, as well as the parents of the underage children in North Carolina.

The Alliance's senior counsel of the group, Jeremy Tedesco issued a statement regarding their lawsuit. "The agencies must stop using falsehoods about what federal law requires to threaten student access to educational opportunities and financial assistance," Tedesco said on Wednesday, Reuters quoted.

They want the judge to put an end to the federal government's threats to withhold funding from public schools and universities. At stake in the battle are $800 million for public schools and $1.4 billion for universities.

The said lawsuit is the latest to have been filed following the ever controversial state bill, HB2 mandating people to access to bathrooms that match their gender identity on their birth certificates.

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