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College of the Ozarks alleges violations of religious freedoms in the federal lawsuit.
Photo courtesy College of the Ozarks
College of the Ozarks alleges violations of religious freedoms in the federal lawsuit.

C of O sues Biden administration

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Point Lookout-based College of the Ozarks filed suit against the Biden administration.  

The lawsuit filed yesterday in federal court alleges violations of religious freedoms by an executive order signed by President Joe Biden in January, according to a news release. 

The Jan. 20 executive order is designed to prevent discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation. 

“Children should be able to learn without worrying about whether they will be denied access to the restroom, the locker room or school sports," Biden wrote in the order.

C of O, which is defended by attorneys of the conservative Christian nonprofit Alliance Defending Freedom, challenges the order's interpretation of the word "sex" in the Fair Housing Act to include sexual orientation and gender identity.  

College officials believe biological sex is not changeable, according to the release, and its policies in dormitories reflect that belief. The lawsuit alleges religious freedom violations by forcing C of O to change its policy on the prohibition of biologically male students from living in female residence halls.  

“The government cannot and should not force schools to open girls’ dorms to males based on its politically motivated and inappropriate redefinition of ‘sex,’” said Julie Marie Blake, senior counsel with ADF, in the release. “Women shouldn’t be forced to share private spaces — including showers and dorm rooms — with males, and religious schools shouldn’t be punished simply because of their beliefs about marriage and biological sex."

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