By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com September 25 2002 12:00 AM ET
The transgendered woman who sued a Los Angeles beauty school because it would not let her go to class dressed as a woman has settled the lawsuit and will be allowed to attend after all, her lawyer said Monday. Attorney Gloria Allred said in a statement that her client, identified only as "Sandy," had negotiated a settlement with Marinello School of Beauty and would begin classes Tuesday to become a hairstylist.
"She's very happy," Allred said Monday. "She's very excited, and she's looking forward to beginning her education to become a hairstylist tomorrow." Allred declined to elaborate on the terms of the settlement, which she said were confidential, and a spokeswoman for the beauty school declined to comment.
Sandy brought the lawsuit, the first of its kind under a city law that prohibits businesses from discrimination based on sexual orientation, in August in Los Angeles superior court. That ordinance defines sexual orientation not by physiology but as "a self-image not associated with one's biological maleness or one's biological femaleness." Sandy claimed that the school administrators initially enrolled her because they thought she was a biological woman but changed their minds after learning that she is a biological man and were concerned about which rest room she would use. According to the lawsuit, Sandy offered to use the rest room of the school's choice or to go off campus to answer nature's call, but the school refused the offer, Allred said. Allred said that under the settlement, Sandy will use a special rest room with a lock that has been set aside for her.