Alabama City Passes a Troubling New Anti-Trans Ordinance

April 27th 2016

Alex Mierjeski

The town of Oxford, Alabama has passed a troubling new ordinance.

Oxford, Alabama

It's now illegal to use bathrooms in Oxford that do not correspond with a person's gender according to their birth certificate.

The new law, which officials said came in response to open bathroom and changing room policies at Target stores, will impose a $500 fine or up to six months in jail on violators. Oxford's Police Chief, Bill Partridge, told the Associated Press that the law will be enforced like any other city ordinance.

Responses to the new law on Twitter have been a predictable mix of horrified and celebratory.

It's unclear how the Target store in Oxford will navigate the ordinance.

ATTN: reached out to the company, and will update when we hear back. LGBT rights groups condemned the new law.

“This ordinance is a shameful and vile attack on the rights and privacy of transgender people,” said HRC Alabama State Manager Eva Walton Kendrick in a statement. “Transgender people are our neighbors, our coworkers and our fellow churchgoers, and every Alabamian has the right to live their lives without fear of discrimination and prejudice."

Last week, the national retail chain announced that employees and customers could use bathrooms and changing rooms in the stores according to their gender preference.


In the days since then, the store's policy has given rise to public outcry from religious and conservative groups. A petition started by the American Family Association had nearly 800,000 signatures in just three days. The policy also spawned a grassroots trend among straight, cisgender men attempting to debunk Target's inclusive rule by filming themselves asking to access women's bathrooms because it's where they "feel comfortable."