This Law Firm Is Linked to Anti-Transgender Bathroom Bills Across the Country

(editor note: sigh, sometimes you are not paranoid, they are out to get you) by Mary Emily O’Hara Apr 8 2017

Bills have been introduced in 15 states nationwide this year that aim to restrict transgender people’s access to sex-segregated facilities. From Minnesota to New York, many of the legislative bills awaiting votes focus specifically on schools as kids and teens find themselves at the center of a battle over bathrooms.

But many of the so-called “bathroom bills” filed across multiple states closely resemble each other. That’s because many used language strongly similar to the model legislation called the Student Physical Privacy Act drafted by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a powerful conservative Christian law firm with a decades-long track record of litigating against LGBT rights. It’s also been labeled a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

The firm’s model legislation is mirrored in — sometimes identical to — proposed state bills around the country. Minnesota’s 2017 Student Physical Privacy Act is a word-for-word copy of the ADF legislation. A 2016 Kansas bill to create a student privacy act was an ADF twin as well. While the Kansas bill died after public outcry over a provision allowing students to sue their schools every time they encountered a trans classmate in a restroom, the Minnesota bill is currently awaiting a hearing. NBC News examined a handful of similar bills in Texas, Illinois, Kentucky, South Dakota, and Nevada that all appeared to be influenced by the model legislation. Dozens of such bills were proposed in early 2017.

In February 2016, the Washington Post quoted ADF attorney Matt Sharp saying that “lawmakers in at least five states” had used the model legislation. Sharp also told the Post that ADF had mailed its Student Physical Privacy Act to “thousands” of school districts.