The ACLU of Idaho strives for a state free of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. This means an individual who identifies as part of the LGBTQ community can live openly, where our identities, relationships and families are respected, and where there is fair treatment on the job, in schools, housing, public places, health care and government programs.
Basic Rights and Liberties In Idaho
Housing, Employment and Public Accomodations:
Currently there are 12 cities which have protections for people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in the areas of employment, housing, and public accomodations. These laws are called nondiscrimination ordinances.
- Sandpoint (passed in 2011)
- Boise (passed in 2012)
- Ketchum (passed in 2013)
- Moscow (passed in 2013)
- Coeur d'Alene (passed in 2013)
- Pocatello (passed in 2013)
- Lewiston (passed in 2014)
- Victor (passed in 2014)
- Driggs (passed in 2015)
- Hailey (passed in 2015)
- Bellevue (passed in 2015)
- Meridian (passed in 2018)
- Idaho Falls (passed with protections that include protections in public accommodations in 2020)
Only two counties in Idaho have NDO’s. Ada county passed a non-discrimination ordinance in 2020 based on sexual orientation or gender identity and applies to areas like employment, housing and public accommodations. Latah county also has an anti-discrimination ordinance in place but it only covers county employees.
In order to help you exercise these rights, if you feel you have been discriminated against, file a police report in the city where the potential discrimination occured. If the potential discrimination happened in a city without a nondiscrimination ordinance, you may not be protected. Contact our office and the Idaho Human Rights Commission for more information.
Does Idaho have Statewide Protections?
Currently there are no official statewide protections for people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The ACLU of Idaho works closely with Add the Words, Planned Parenthood, Pride Foundation and other LGBTQ organizations to continue to try to pass inclusive statewide legislation.
It has been legal for same sex couples to be married in the state of Idaho since Oct 15, 2014. At the federal level, all same sex couples have the right to marry, according to the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court decision, received on June 26th, 2015.
LGBTQ students have the right to:
- attend school, free of harassment due to their sexual orientation and/or gender identity,
- not be "outed" at school or to their parents or family
- organize Gay-Straight Alliances and other clubs
- the same 1st amendment rights to freedom of speech as other students
- wear the gendered type of clothes that they feel comfortable in at prom or other dances
- take a same sex date to prom or other dances.
See more about your rights as a student here.
The rights of transgender students to use gendered facilities that match their gender identity are still being battled in the courts, but if you are a transgender student or the parent of a transgender student and are concerned about the ability to use gendered facilities, please contact us.
Documents on which a name change is possible in Idaho:
Idaho Policies on Allowing Gender Marker Changes: