Gay Rights Activist Files Lawsuit Challenging TN Counseling Law

Nov 15, 2017


A gay rights activist has filed a federal lawsuit challenging a Tennessee law that allows therapists to refuse clients based on personal beliefs.

The lawsuit was filed against Governor Bill Haslam this week argues the law violates the U.S. Constitution.

Plaintiff Bleu Copas had also filed a similar lawsuit last year in an Anderson County court. Under the law, counselors can turn clients away if their ‘goals, outcomes or behaviors’ conflict with the counselor's ‘sincerely held principles.’

The lawsuit says the law represents "an actual and imminent threat of discrimination" to Copas and others in Tennessee.

A spokesperson for Haslam said the governor’s office does not comment on pending litigation. Haslam signed the law in 2016.