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GLSEN Applauds AB1266 Protecting CA Transgender Students
Public Relations Manager
NEW YORK, August 12, 2013 – GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, today applauded California Governor Jerry Brown for signing the School Success and Opportunity Act (AB 1266) into law, ensuring transgender students are able to fully participate in all school activities, sports teams, programs and facilities in accordance with their gender identity. In July, the California State Senate passed the transgender-inclusive bill authored by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano.
“This important moment in California will ensure that transgender students have the equal opportunity to succeed in school and graduate on time regardless of their gender identity,” said Dr. Eliza Byard, GLSEN’s Executive Director. “We know that far too many transgender students experience pervasive discrimination and are excluded from their school life. AB1266 makes sure that California’s public schools understand their responsibility for the success and wellbeing of all students, and that both parents and students understand their rights.”
"No student should have to sacrifice their health, wellbeing, and the truth about who they are in order to succeed in school," said Eli Elrick, a transgender high school student from Willits, California and former GLSEN Student Ambassador. “No matter who they are, every student deserves to be safe in school and feel like they belong.
Existing California law broadly prohibits discrimination against transgender students, but AB 1266 specifically calls upon public schools to respect a transgender student’s identity in all school programs, activities, and facilities. GLSEN will continue to work with its state partners to ensure that all students in California have equal access, and that districts and school leaders protect the safety of all students.
GLSEN has championed this shift in Washington for the past decade to ensure that creating safer schools for all students is a federal priority. GLSEN will continue to invest its resources into federal legislation like the Safe Schools Improvement Act and the Student Non-Discrimination Act that protect all students in school from bullying and harassment regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.
GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, is the leading national education organization focused on ensuring safe schools for all students. Established in 1990, GLSEN envisions a world in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. GLSEN seeks to develop school climates where difference is valued for the positive contribution it makes to creating a more vibrant and diverse community. For information on GLSEN's research, educational resources, public policy advocacy, student organizing programs and educator training initiatives, visit www.glsen.org.