House File 622 - IntroducedA Bill ForAn Act 1permitting public schools to designate and allow the
2use of restrooms and changing facilities only by persons of
3the same biological sex, and providing a private cause of
1   Section 1.  Section 216.9, Code 2023, is amended by adding
2the following new subsection:
3   NEW SUBSECTION.  1A.  It shall not be an unfair or
4discriminatory practice for a public school to require
5restrooms or changing facilities to be designated only for and
6used by persons of the same sex as provided in chapter 280B.
7It also shall not be an unfair or discriminatory practice for
8a public school to prohibit a person from using a restroom or
9changing facility that does not correspond with the person’s
10sex. For purposes of this subsection, “public school” means the
11same as defined in section 280B.2.
12   Sec. 2.  NEW SECTION.  280B.1  Short title.
   13This chapter may be cited as the “Iowa Accommodations for All
14Children Act”
15   Sec. 3.  NEW SECTION.  280B.2  Definitions.
   16For purposes of this chapter:
   171.  “Changing facility” means a facility in which a person
18may be in a state of undress in the presence of others,
19including a locker room, changing room, or shower room.
   202.  “Public school” means a school as described in chapter
21256E, 256F, or 274. “Public school” does not include any
22accredited or nonaccredited nonpublic schools, including
23private schools, religious schools, and home-educating
   253.  “Restroom” means a facility that includes one or more
26toilets or urinals.
   274.  “Sex” means the same as defined in section 261I.1.
28   Sec. 4.  NEW SECTION.  280B.3  Privacy accommodations.
   291.  A public school shall provide a reasonable accommodation
30to any person who both:
   31a.  For any reason, is unwilling or unable to use a
32multi-occupancy restroom or changing facility that is
33designated for the person’s sex and located within a public
34school building, or multi-occupancy sleeping quarters while
35attending a public school sponsored activity.
   1b.  Requests a reasonable accommodation to the public school.
   22.  Reasonable accommodations may include access to a
3single-occupancy restroom or changing facility, or use of
4an employee restroom or changing facility. In granting a
5reasonable accommodation or otherwise, a public school shall
6not provide access to a restroom or changing facility that is
7designated for use by members of the opposite sex while persons
8of the opposite sex are present or could be present.
   93.  This section shall not be construed to prohibit public
10schools from adopting policies necessary to accommodate persons
11protected under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act
12or young children in need of physical assistance when using
13restrooms or changing facilities located in public schools.
   144.  This section shall not be construed to prohibit
15public schools from authorizing a person to enter a facility
16designated for the opposite sex for the following purposes:
   17a.  Custodial or maintenance purposes, when the facility is
18not occupied by a member of the opposite sex.
   19b.  To render emergency medical assistance.
   20c.  During a natural disaster, emergency, or when necessary
21to prevent serious threat to good order or student safety.
22   Sec. 5.  NEW SECTION.  280B.4  Private cause of action —
   241.  A person whose written request for a reasonable
25accommodation is denied by the public school shall have a
26private cause of action against the public school unless the
27public school can demonstrate that the accommodation would
28cause undue hardship.
   292.  A person has a private cause of action against a public
30school if the public school gave a member of the opposite sex
31permission to use the restroom, changing facility, or sleeping
32quarters and the person either:
   33a.  Encounters a member of the opposite sex in the
34multi-occupancy restroom or changing facility designated for
35the person’s sex and located in a public school building.
   1b.  Is required by the public school to share sleeping
2quarters with a member of the opposite sex, unless such persons
3are members of the same family including spouse, parent or
4guardian, child, sibling, or grandparent.
   53.  Any claims arising pursuant to this section shall
6be brought in the state or federal trial court in whose
7jurisdiction either the person resides or the public school is
8located at the time of filing.
   94.  All civil actions brought pursuant to this section must
10be brought within two years after the violation occurred.
   115.  Persons aggrieved under this section who prevail in court
12may recover monetary damages for all psychological, emotional,
13and physical harm suffered.
   146.  This section shall not limit other remedies at law or
15equity available to the aggrieved person against the public
18The inclusion of this explanation does not constitute agreement with
19the explanation’s substance by the members of the general assembly.
   20This bill permits public schools to designate and allow the
21use of restrooms and changing facilities only by persons of the
22same sex. The bill defines changing facility, public school,
23sex, and restroom. Sex means a person’s biological sex as
24either female or male. The sex listed on a student’s official
25birth certificate or certificate issued upon adoption may be
26relied upon if the certificate was issued at or near the time
27of the student’s birth. Changing facility means a facility,
28including but not limited to a locker room, changing room, or
29shower room, designed or designated to be used by more than one
30person at a time where a person may be in varying stages of
31undress in the presence of other persons.
   32The bill provides that accommodations may be made due to
33special circumstances at a person’s request. Accommodations
34include allowing a person to use a single-occupancy restroom or
35changing facility. An accommodation shall not include allowing
-3-1a person to use a multiple-occupancy restroom or changing
2facility that does not correspond with the person’s sex. The
3bill states that the policies that result from the bill do not
4constitute unfair or discriminatory practices in violation of
5the Iowa civil rights Act, Code chapter 216.
   6The bill provides that a person may enter a bathroom or
7changing facility inconsistent with the person’s biological sex
8under any of the following circumstances: for custodial or
9maintenance purposes; to render medical assistance; in a public
10school, to accompany a young child needing assistance; or if
11necessary during a natural disaster.
   12The bill provides for private cause of action if a
13public school violates new Code chapter 280B. Any person
14has private cause of action if the school denies the person
15an accommodation without proving undue hardship. The bill
16also allows any person a private cause of action if the
17person encounters a member of the opposite sex in a restroom
18or changing facility designated for the person’s sex or is
19required by the public school to share sleeping quarters with a
20member of the opposite sex who is not a member of the person’s
21family and the school gave permission to the member of the
22opposite sex to use the restroom or changing facility. The
23bill establishes jurisdiction and that a claim shall be brought
24within two years of the violation. A person is able to recover
25monetary damages for the harm suffered and any other remedies
26available by law or equity available to the person against the