PHOENIX (AP) - LGBT groups are suing Arizona over a state law that restricts discussions about homosexuality in HIV and AIDS curriculum.
The lawsuit filed Thursday on behalf of Equality Arizona asks a federal judge to strike down an Arizona law known as "no promo homo."
The 1991 law prohibits HIV and AIDS instruction that "promotes a homosexual lifestyle," ''portrays homosexuality as a positive alternative lifestyle" or "suggests that some methods of sex are safe methods of homosexual sex."
The lawsuit says the law stigmatizes lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and creates a state-sanctioned climate of discrimination.
Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman and the state Board of Education are named as defendants. Hoffman, a Democrat, has previously called on lawmakers to repeal the law.
Hoffman has issued the following statement regarding the anti-LGBTQ curriculum law:
“Since the beginning of my career in teaching and politics, I have always been opposed to this anti-LGBTQ legislation and its harmful implications. This law prohibits educators from discussing topics related to LGBTQ relationships or portraying them in a positive light in our HIV/AIDS curriculum. Throughout my travels across the state, students and families have shared with me the impact that this law has had on their lives. At school, they feel unsafe, unwelcome and unsupported. Furthermore, it also denies all students comprehensive, scientifically accurate health education.
I welcome the opportunity this lawsuit brings to educate the public and bring visibility to the issues as we continue the march toward equality.”