“LEWISTON, Idaho - A 25-year-old transgender Lewiston resident who identifies as a woman said she’s been served with trespassing papers after customers at a local grocery store complained when she used the women’s bathroom.
“When I did use the males (restroom) there would be people that would harass me in school,” Ally Robledo said. “I would feel really embarrassed and there were times when I found myself in a lot of dangerous situations.”
Robledo, who prefers to go by Ally and identifies as a woman, was given a no trespass order Monday night shortly after leaving the Rosauer’s grocery store location in Lewiston.
“A male subject who was using the female restroom, and that made some women customers uncomfortable because of the appearance that a male was using their restroom,” said Lewiston Police Captain Roger Lanier.
Robledo doesn’t understand the controversy.
“I really doubt that would be more socially acceptable than someone using the men’s restroom,” Ally said.
Lewiston Police say the store owners did nothing wrong in asking Robledo to never come back to the store.
“The store employees didn’t want any further problems, and they chose to exercise their right to trespass this individual from the business,” Lanier said. “Anyone who owns or controls their property can make that decision.”
Robledo says she has gone through one phase of reconstructive surgery.
“I think calling the police is not really sufficient and I think it’s a waste of our tax payer dollars,” Ally said.
The issue of transgender individuals and the bathrooms they use is currently being addressed in Arizona.
Republican Arizona State Rep. John Kavanagh has garnered national attention after proposing a bill that would penalize people for using a bathroom that doesn’t match the gender identity on their ID.
While Kavanagh tackles the issue in Arizona, many other states including Idaho, are left wondering what to do about the sensitive situation.
According to the National Center for Lesbian Rights, 13 states including Washington protect transgender people from discrimination in public accommodations, but the exact definition of a “public accommodation” differs from state to state.
There is currently no federal law that prohibits discrimination based on gender identity for public accommodations.
The manager on duty Wednesday afternoon at Rosauer’s chose not to comment. KLEW News attempted to get an official comment from the corporate offices of Rosauers, however, our calls have not been returned.”