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SCOTUS to Review Gavin Grimm Case
Senior Manager of Media Relations
GLSEN Responds to Supreme Court Decision to Review Case of Virginia Transgender Student Refused Access to Restroom That Corresponds with Gender Identity
WASHINGTON (October 28, 2016) – GLSEN’s Director of Public Policy, Nathan Smith, responded to the decision by the United States Supreme Court to review the case of Gavin Grimm, a Virginia high school student who has been barred from using the restroom that corresponds with his gender identity by the Gloucester County School District. The district’s policy does not comply with the guidance issued in May by the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice on how districts should accommodate transgender and gender nonconforming students under Title IX.
“Too many transgender students suffer on a daily basis because their school districts are illegally discriminating against them. We are disappointed that the Supreme Court’s decision to take this case now likely means that Gavin Grimm is going to have to continue to use the wrong restroom throughout his senior year in high school. However, we are hopeful that the Court’s eventual ruling will at long last bring an end to discrimination against transgender students in schools nationwide.
“Transgender students have suffered long enough. The mounting evidence of the harms to them is very clear, and schools that take steps to support transgender students experience no problems as a result. All students deserve to attend schools that affirm their whole identities so they can excel in school and live out their full potential. We believe that justice will prevail and are optimistic that the Supreme Court will ultimately affirm the identity and rights of transgender students across the United States.”
GLSEN has created model laws and policies for schools, districts and states to ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer and/or questioning (LGBTQ) students are safe and affirmed at school, including a model district policy for accommodating transgender and gender nonconforming students that complies with Title IX.
The latest edition of GLSEN’s National School Climate Survey found that transgender students were more likely to avoid gender-segregated spaces at schools, such as bathrooms and locker rooms, because of feeling unsafe or uncomfortable. LGBTQ students who experienced discrimination and bullying and harassment at school were more than three times as likely to have missed school in the past month as those who did not, had lower GPAs than their peers, and had lower self-esteem and higher levels of depression.
GLSEN champions safe and affirming schools for all students. We envision a world in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. Each year, GLSEN programs and resources reach tens of thousands of K-12 schools across the United States, and our network of chapters brings GLSEN’s expertise to their local communities. GLSEN's progress and impact have won support for our work at all levels of education in the United States and sparked an international movement to ensure equality for LGBTQ students and respect for all in schools. For more information on GLSEN’s policy advocacy, student leadership initiatives, public education, research and educator training programs, please visit glsen.org.