US Supreme Court to hear challenge over transgender rights case
The Supreme Court will hear a potentially landmark case in which a student has sued his school district for enforcing a bathroom ban policy.
Virginia school district challenged the Obama administration guidelines that require students to allow transgender students to use the bathroom that they identify with, rather than what matches their birth gender.
Gavin Grimm, a senior at a high school in the district, is being back by ACLU in his bid to sue.
17-year-old Grimm initially lost the case at the District court but the Court of Appeals later ruled in his favour.
The student’s case raises the challenge that the policy violates Title IX of the Education Amendments 1972. This title has been interpreted by the Obama administration as a ban on anti-transgender discrimination.
Grimm’s attorneys said it was “disappointing” that the court would allow the policy to remain while Grimm is finishing his time in the school district.
“These sorts of discriminatory policies stigmatize and isolate transgender students like Gavin just because of who they are,” ACLU attorney Joshua Block said in a statement.
“We look forward to presenting Gavin’s case to the Supreme Court as the next step in the fight to ensure fairness and equality for trans people across the country.”
Justices announced they would hear the case on on Friday, and it is likely to be heard in April with a final decision being announced in June.
The US Supreme Court in the summer ruled that the school could temporarily block the trans student from using male bathroom facilities during the legal battle.
The ruling on the case could have a major impact on bias against the transgender community.
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Gavin Grimm is disappointed that he is still experiencing discrimination within his school.
“While I’m disappointed that I will have to spend my final school year being singled out and treated differently from every other guy, I will do everything I can to make sure that other transgender students don’t have to go through the same experience,” he said.
Gloucester County School Board lawyer, Kyle Duncan, argued that under Title IX, “our nation’s schools have structured their facilities and programs around the idea that in certain intimate settings, men and women may be separated ‘to afford members of each sex privacy from the other sex.’
“The appeals court’s ruling ‘turns that longstanding expectation upside down’,” he said.
“We are grateful that the Supreme Court has granted the School Board’s petition in this difficult case,” the school board said in a statement.
“The Board looks forward to explaining to the Court that its restroom and locker room policy carefully balances the interests of all students and parents in the Gloucester County school system.”