A transgender teenager has filed a lawsuit against her school district after the school board enacted a policy prohibiting her from using the girls’ bathroom.
Juliet Evancho is one of three students suing the Pine-Richland School district in federal court after the school board approved a policy that requires students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond to their sex given at birth.
The board passed the vote in September after parents complained, but Juliet and her peers do not believe school officials are doing enough to protect them from harassment.
“This is my senior year. I should be worried about what college I’m going to, not what bathroom I should be using,” said Juliet.
“I’m a teenager. I have teenage problems that any normal teenage girl would have, and now I have these issues with the school.”
Juliet’s younger sister is facing torment from others in her class over the policy.
“I think they feel empowered now that they have this invitation from the policy there’s a boy in her class who is harassing her about my issue.”
When Juliet came out as transgender in May, her family were concerned for her safety in the school and since the newly enforced rule, their anxiety has increased.
Lisa Evancho, Juliet’s mother, said she wants to know how the school is going to ensure the safety of her daughters.
“One of their biggest concerns was, ‘What are you going to do to ensure the safety of my daughters when a transgender female is using the restroom?’ And now, I’d like to know what the school district is going to do to ensure the safety of my transgender daughter when she has to walk into the men’s room,” she said.
Juliet said that while she is a senior this year, she plans to continue to fight the issue to help future transgender students.
“This isn’t my fight. This is the fight for everyone who comes after me,” Juliet said.
A statement released by the school district said: “The district strives to ensure a safe and positive learning environment for all students. Evidence of bullying, threats and harassment are not tolerated and would result in disciplinary consequences.”