Supreme Court declines to hear case on trans students using bathrooms of their choice

Supreme Court declines to hear case on trans students using bathrooms of their choice
AP Photo/Steve Helber, File
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The Supreme Court has declined to hear a case that could have reversed a ruling that allowed students identifying as transgender to use the bathroom of their choice, effectively shutting down one of the major efforts against progressive transgenderism in schools.

The Court declined to hear the case concerning Gavin Grimm, a Virginia transgender student who sued the Gloucester County school board for stating that restrooms were “limited to the corresponding biological genders.”

Grimm, a biological female who identifies as a boy, alleged that being instructed to use a unisex bathroom instead of being able to use the boys’ restrooms created a feeling of being “stigmatized and isolated.” Grimm successfully sued the high school in 2015 after it changed its bathroom policy to prohibit transgender people from using whichever bathroom they pleased, instructing them to instead use the bathrooms that corresponded to their biological gender. 

“The case initially reached the Supreme Court in 2017, but the argument was canceled after President Trump reversed an Obama administration rule that had directed schools to allow students to use restrooms that correspond with their gender identity,” the Washington Post reported. 

In 2016, the Obama Department of Education wrote: 

“Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) and its implementing regulations prohibit sex discrimination in educational programs and activities operated by recipients of Federal financial assistance. This prohibition encompasses discrimination based on a student’s gender identity, including discrimination based on a student’s transgender status. … A school may provide separate facilities on the basis of sex, but must allow transgender students access to such facilities consistent with their gender identity. A school may not require transgender students to use facilities inconsistent with their gender identity or to use individual-user facilities when other students are not required to do so.”

In February 2017, the Trump Department of Education withdrew the Obama guidance, arguing that the Obama administration did not perform extensive legal analysis or explain how the position is consistent with the language of Title IX. 

Arguing against the Trump administration, the ACLU claimed that requiring Grimm to use separate single-stall bathrooms “stigmatized him as unfit to use the same restroom as his peers.” 

The case was to be brought to the Supreme Court by Virginia’s Gloucester County School Board after an appeals court ruled in favour of Grimm. 

As SCOTUS declined to hear the case, Josh Block, a senior staff attorney declared it “an incredible victory for Gavin and for transgender students around the country.”

“Being forced to use the nurse’s room, a private bathroom, and the girl’s room was humiliating for me, and having to go to out-of-the-way bathrooms severely interfered with my education. Trans youth deserve to use the bathroom in peace without being humiliated and stigmatized by their own school boards and elected officials,” said Grimm in a statement.

Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito expressed dismay and said the Supreme Court should have taken the case.

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