(Washington, D.C.) The National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) and law firm Mayer Brown LLP submitted an amicus brief to the Supreme Court late yesterday in G.G. v. Gloucester County School Board—challenging the school board’s policy that bars transgender students from restrooms that match their gender. The person at the center of the case is 17-year-old transgender student Gavin Grimm, who has been forbidden to use boys’ bathrooms at Gloucester High School in Gloucester, Virginia and instead forced to use a separate bathroom in a converted utility closet. Twenty-two women’s and reproductive rights and justice group have signed on to the brief.
The Center’s brief argues that Title IX, the federal law that bans sex discrimination in education, prohibits schools from barring transgender students from using the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity. The brief details how invented threats to women and girls in bathrooms have been used to perpetuate discrimination and undermine civil rights protections. Discrimination against trans people is rooted in sex stereotyping that federal law clearly forbids in schools.
“Gavin Grimm should be focused on where to go to college or which movie to see. Instead he was required to battle his school simply to use the boys’ restrooms,” said Fatima Goss Graves, NWLC Senior Vice President for Program and President-elect. “It’s shameful that trans students across the country are ostracized and discriminated against for simply being themselves. Schools have a clear responsibility to create safe learning spaces, free of discrimination, for all students—including discrimination based on gender identity.”
The Supreme Court, which is scheduled to hear the case on March 28 is expected to determine whether Title IX prohibits discrimination against transgender students.
NWLC legal experts are available to discuss the broader implications of this case.
The National Women’s Law Center is a non-profit organization that has been working since 1972 to advance and protect women’s equality and opportunity. The Center focuses on major policy areas of importance to women and their families including economic security, education, employment and health, with special attention given to the concerns of low-income women. For more information on the Center, visit: www.nwlc.org.