College of the Ozarks filed suit in federal court Thursday against the Biden administration over a directive from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that forces religious schools to violate their beliefs by opening their dormitories — including dorm rooms and shared shower spaces — to members of the opposite sex.
“Religious freedom is under attack in America, and we won’t stand on the sidelines and watch,” said College of the Ozarks President Dr. Jerry C. Davis. “To threaten religious freedom is to threaten America itself. College of the Ozarks will not allow politicians to erode this essential American right or the ideals that shaped America’s founding.”
The Biden administration directive requires groups covered by the Fair Housing Act not to discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
The rule change forces religious universities to violate their beliefs by opening female dorms to males and vice versa.
Fines for failure to comply can reach more than six figures, not including punitive damages or legal fees.
The university is represented by Alliance Defending Freedom, a non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.
“The government cannot and should not force schools to open girls’ dorms to males based on its politically motivated and inappropriate redefinition of ‘sex,’” said ADF Senior Counsel Julie Marie Blake. “Women shouldn’t be forced to share private spaces—including showers and dorm rooms—with males, and religious schools shouldn’t be punished simply because of their beliefs about marriage and biological sex.”
Blake added, “Government overreach by the Biden administration continues to victimize women, girls, and people of faith by gutting their legal protections, and it must be stopped.”
College of the Ozarks is a private, Christian, liberal arts college in Point Lookout, Missouri. The lawsuit The School of the Ozarks, Inc. d/b/a College of the Ozarks v. Biden was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, Southern Division.