Alabama

Find Your State

Know the laws in your state that protect LBGT people and people living with HIV.
NO
Does state law protect employees in the private sector from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation?
NO
Does state law protect employees in the private sector from discrimination on the basis of gender identity and/or gender expression?
NO
Does state law expressly protect employees of state and local governments from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation?
NO
Does state law expressly protect employees of state and local governments from discrimination on the basis of gender identity and/or gender expression?

All government employees are protected by the U.S. Constitution against irrational discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. In addition, some measure of protection already exists under Title VII based on gender, which has been held to include gender identity and expression.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and several courts have interpreted Title VII to protect transgender employees, and the EEOC has interpreted Title VII to cover sexual orientation discrimination. The Supreme Court has held that the EEOC's interpretations of Title VII are entitled to "great deference." 

HIV & Healthcare

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Does Alabama have an HIV criminalization law?

YES, Alabama has a criminal law that punishes people with an HIV diagnosis specifically for nondisclosure of HIV status prior to sexual conduct.  A violation of this statute is classified as a misdemeanor.

Has there been at least one HIV-based criminal prosecution—brought under an HIV-specific criminal law or a general criminal law—in Alabama in recent years?

YES, in recent years, there has been at least one criminal prosecution for HIV nondisclosure in Alabama.

Does Alabama have laws that criminalize or enhance the penalties for biting, spitting and/or throwing bodily fluids or substances (such as urine or excrement) if a person has been diagnosed with HIV?

NO, Alabama does not have laws that criminalize or enhance penalties for biting, spitting and/or throwing bodily fluids or substances (such as urine or excrement) if a person has been diagnosed with HIV, but that does not mean the state could not prosecute a person engaged in such activities under general criminal laws or argue for sentence enhancements based on the person’s HIV diagnosis.

Does Alabama have criminal laws addressing HIV+ sex workers and/or HIV+ patrons of sex workers?

NO,  Alabama does not have laws that enhance penalties for HIV-positive people involved in commercial sexual transactions, but that does not mean that a prosecutor could not argue for an enhanced sentence in such a situation based on the defendant’s HIV-positive status, if the prosecutor has access to that information, or attempt to bring separate charges under an HIV-specific nondisclosure statute or the general criminal laws.

NO
Does the state explicitly ban transgender exclusions in health insurance?
NO
Does the state have laws that may be used to fight against health care discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity?
Who may adopt?

Any unmarried adult or husband and wife jointly. Ala. Code § 26-10A-5.

Second-parent adoptions:
Second-parent adoptions do not appear to be available in any jurisdictions. A recent AL Supreme Court decision ruled that a Georgia second parent adoption was void based on Georgia law, which is similar to Alabama law -- and many other state laws -- on adoptions.  Ex parte E.L., 2015 Ala. LEXIS 110 (Ala. Sept. 18, 2015). Couples with second parent adoptions should consult an attorney if traveling, or relocating, to Alabama. 
 

 

Case law reveals hostility to gay parents. See Ex parte J.M.F., 730 So.2d 1190 (Ala. 1998).

Public Accommodations

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NO
Public accommodations protections on the basis of sexual orientation and/or gender identity?

Relationships

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YES
Does the state allow same-sex couples to marry?
YES
Does the state recognize marriages of same-sex couples from other jurisdictions?
NO
Does the state offer any other type of relationship recognition for same-sex couples?

Now that the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of marriage equality, state and local officials can and should stop enforcing their marriage bans immediately. But it is possible that officials in some places may not start allowing couples to marry until the federal courts issue orders directly prohibiting them from enforcing their state or territory’s marriage ban. Federal lawsuits have been brought in all states that continue to enforce their marriage bans as well as in Puerto Rico, and we expect attorneys in those cases to promptly ask the courts to issue injunctions or to take other steps now that the Supreme Court has ruled. We know from experience, however, that this process can take a different amount of time in each jurisdiction depending on how quickly the courts move and how much government officials attempt to drag out the process. The process could be resolved as quickly as within a matter of days or it could take a bit longer depending on the particular jurisdiction.

YES
Does state law prohibit bullying in public schools?
YES
Does the law include cyberbullying?
NO
Does the law specifically mention sexual orientation?
NO
Does the law specifically mention gender identity?
NO
Does the law also apply to private, non-religious schools?
NO
Is there a state antidiscrimination law that applies (or may apply) to schools?

No public funds or public facilities may be used by any college or university to

·         “promote a lifestyle or activities prohibited by sodomy and sexual misconduct laws”

·         “sanction, recognize, or support the activities or existence of any organization or group that fosters or promotes a lifestyle or actions prohibited by the state’s sodomy and sexual misconduct laws.”

Ala. Code § 16-28B-3

2009 Ala. Acts 869 §§ 1-3

2009 Ala. Acts 1674, § 3; Model Anti-Harassment Policy (Oct. 20, 2009), Ala. Dept. of Education.

Code of Ala. §16-40A-2 (8) "An emphasis, in a factual manner and from a public health perspective, that homosexuality is not a lifestyle acceptable to the general public and that homosexual conduct is a criminal offense under the laws of the state."

Please contact Lambda Legal if you are a parent or student in Alabama and are negatively impacted by this statute or feel that it violates your consitutional rights.