The Trump administration ends federal protections for transgender students that instructed schools to allow them to use bathrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identities.
Stepping into an emotional national debate, the administration came down on the side of states’ rights, lifting federal guidelines that had been issued by the Obama administration and characterized by Republicans as a legal overreach.
Without the Obama directive, it will be up to states and school districts to interpret federal anti-discrimination law and determine whether students should have access to restrooms in accordance with their expressed gender identity and not just their biological sex.
Jackie Evancho ‘disappointed’ with President Trump revoking transgender bathroom guidelines
Jackie Evancho, the 16-year-old singer who performed the National Anthem at President Donald Trump’s inauguration, is now “disappointed” with him.
Evancho, who has a transgender sister, tweeted at Trump after he announced the decision to roll back federal guidelines on bathroom requirements for transgender students at public schools.
— Jackie Evancho (@jackieevancho) February 22, 2017
— Jackie Evancho (@jackieevancho) February 23, 2017
Jackie Evancho, Sister Interview: Hope to ‘enlighten’ Trump on Transgender Issues | ABC News
State laws could continue to emerge as a result of the change. Fifteen states have explicit protections for transgender students in their state laws, and many individual school districts in other states have adopted policies that cover such students on the basis of their gender identity, said Sarah Warbelow, legal director of the Human Rights Campaign. Just one state, North Carolina, has enacted a law restricting access to bathrooms in government-owned buildings to the sex that appears on a person’s birth certificate. Lawmakers in more than 10 states are considering similar legislation, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Supreme Court poised to consider related case
In a separate letter, the deputy solicitor general informed the Supreme Court that the guidance had been withdrawn. The court is poised to consider the case of Gavin Grimm, a 17-year-old transgender male who wants to use the bathroom that corresponds to his gender identity.
Last April, a federal appeals court ruled in favor of Grimm, a Virginia resident, who fought the school board’s new policy at Gloucester High School that denied him access to the boys’ bathroom but allowed him the use of recently constructed single-stall unisex restrooms. In ruling for Grimm and against the school district, the court deferred to the Obama administration’s interpretation of Title IX.