Law school group moves Texas meeting because of bathroom bill, immigration law

Legal Education

The Association of American Law Schools is moving a 2018 clinical legal education meeting from Austin, Texas, to Chicago because of legislative action on immigration enforcement and school bathrooms.

The AALS explained the decision in a letter to Texas officials, (sub. req.) reports. Association president Paul Marcus wrote that the group was moving the meeting “at a substantial cost” and would not hold any future meetings in Texas unless lawmakers reconsider the policies.

The letter cited two actions by the legislature that “discriminate against individuals seeking to immigrate to the United States and against members of the LGBTQ community.”

The immigration law, which takes effect in September, authorizes local police to inquire about immigration status when an individual is detained, even if he or she isn’t charged with a crime.

The bathroom bill, if passed, would require that schools designate bathrooms based on a person’s “biological sex,” and that the bathrooms be used based on that designation.

The AALS bylaws bar “discrimination or segregation on the grounds of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, gender (including identity and expression), sexual orientation, age, or disability.”

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