Iowa

Find Your State

Know the laws in your state that protect LBGT people and people living with HIV.
YES
Does state law expressly protect employees of state and local governments from discrimination on the basis of gender identity and/or gender expression?
YES
Does state law protect employees in the private sector from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation?
YES
Does state law protect employees in the private sector from discrimination on the basis of gender identity and/or gender expression?
YES
Does state law expressly protect employees of state and local governments from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation?

 

In 2007, Iowa amended its nondiscrimination statute to prohibit sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination in public and private employment. See Iowa Acts 2007 (82 G.A.) ch. 191, S.F. 427, § 1; Iowa Code 216.2(10, 14); Iowa Code 216.6.

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 LGBT employees. Lambda Legal maintains that the EEOC adjudications regarding Title VII’s coverage should supersede contrary authority that exists in some federal circuits.

HIV & Healthcare

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Does this state have an HIV criminalization law?

YES, Iowa 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 either a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on the circumstances.

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

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

Does this state 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, Iowa 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 this state have criminal laws addressing HIV+ sex workers and/or HIV+ patrons of sex workers?

NO, Iowa 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.

Who may adopt?

Any unmarried adult. Spouse must join petition unless excused by court. See Iowa Code 600.

Second-parent adoptions:

Approved in lower courts.

Public Accommodations

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YES
Public accommodations on the basis of sexual orientation?
YES
Public accommodations on the basis of 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?
YES
Does state law prohibit bullying in public schools?
YES
Does the law include cyberbullying?
YES
Does the law specifically mention sexual orientation?
YES
Does the law specifically mention gender identity?
YES
Does the law also apply to private, non-religious schools?
YES
Is there a state antidiscrimination law that applies (or may apply) to schools?