Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Pennsylvania Transgender Bathroom Use Policy
Do you support rules allowing transgender students to use bathrooms matching their gender identity?
by Countable | 5.28.19
What’s the story?
- The Supreme Court on Tuesday left in place a Pennsylvania school district’s policy of letting transgender students use bathrooms that match their gender identity, declining to hear a challenge backed by a conservative Christian group.
- The court’s action does not set a national legal precedent. The ruling was issued without comment by SCOTUS.
What was the case?
- Boyertown Area School District in Pennsylvania adopted a policy in the 2016-2017 school year that allowed some transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms based on their gender identity.
- A student identified as “Joel Doe” in court documents was changing in the men’s locker room when he encountered a biologically-female student wearing only a bra. Joel Doe and other students who had similar encounters challenged the district’s policies. They were backed by the Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian legal group.
- Lawyers for the school district said Joel Doe and the challenging students “failed to show any infringement of their rights” and defended the district’s “sound educational policy” in handling transgender students.
- Lawyers for Doe argued that his privacy rights were violated and that “forcing a teenager to share a locker room or restroom with a member of the opposite sex can cause embarrassment and distress, particularly for students who have been victims of sexual assault.”
- The federal district court denied Doe’s request, and the Philadelphia-based 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court’s ruling.
What do you think?
Do you support allowing students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity? Should more school districts enact similar policies? Take action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.
(Photo Credit: iStock / mrtom-uk)
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