D.C. restaurant fined $7,000 for trying to stop transgender woman from using women's bathroom

Charlotte Clymer (Photo: Twitter)
Charlotte Clymer (Photo: Twitter)

A Washington, D.C., restaurant will have to pay $7,000 for asking a transgender woman to show ID before going into the women’s bathroom.

“The District’s laws reflect one of our residents’ most deeply-held values: that all people should be treated equally,” D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine said in a statement Wednesday.

Racine announced that Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar would pay the District $7,000 for a penalty and legal costs as part of a settlement for discriminating against a transgender customer. The restaurant must also train its staff on D.C. laws regarding gender identity, as well as post signs on the bathrooms that clearly state that individuals can use the restroom that corresponds to their gender identity.

Back in June, Cuba Libre staff members tried to prevent Charlotte Clymer, a transgender woman who works with the Human Rights Campaign, from using the restaurant’s women’s bathroom, according to the attorney general’s release.

Clymer thanked Racine in a tweet on Wednesday for working to eliminate discrimination.

Cuba Libre apologized after the incident and reportedly fired the employees involved. It also announced that it had reached a resolution with Clymer over the summer that included instituting annual training, making its bathroom signs more inclusive and donating to LGBTQ nonprofit Casa Ruby.

“We are committed to ensuring a welcoming and safe environment in all our restaurants,” Cuba Libre CEO Barry Gutin said in a June statement.

Racine introduced legislation this week to clarify his office’s authority to bring civil actions under the District’s Human Rights Act.

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