In a historic and groundbreaking move, the US District Court in the Eastern District of Virginia has ruled in favour of a sex discrimination lawsuit fighting for equal access to schools bathrooms.
The lawsuit which was filed by ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) and the ACLU of Virginia on behalf of Gavin Grimm who was prevented from using bathroom facilities consistent with his gender identity, will likely set a new precedence for future cases around the nation.
Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen who heard arguments relating to the ACLU’s motion for summary judgement on July 23 2019, issued the ruling confirming that the school board’s policy violated student’s rights under the US Constitution and the Title IX law.
Title IX bars education discrimination on the basis of sex, a definition that LGBTQ activists say includes gender identity but opponents – including the Trump administration – argue does not.
“There is no question that the Board’s policy discriminates against transgender students on the basis of their gender non-conformity,” explained the judge.
“Under the policy, all students except for transgender students may use restrooms corresponding with their gender identity. Transgender students are singled out, subjected to discriminatory treatment, and excluded from spaces where similarly situated students are permitted to go.”
Judge Allen also decided to issue a permanent injunction that now requires the board to update Grimm’s high school transcripts to reflect a male gender marker and provide copies to him within 10 days.
“It is such a relief to achieve this closure and vindication from the court after four years of fighting not just for myself, but for trans youth across America,” said Grimm. “I promise to continue to advocate for as long as it takes for everyone to be able to live their authentic lives freely, in public, and without harassment and discrimination.”
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