Supreme Court Sides With Trans Students in PA Bathroom Case

Trans Rights PA School Bathroom Case

Trans Rights PA School Bathroom Case

Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) lost a landmark case today when the Supreme Court let a Federal Judge’s ruling stand which gives transgender students the right to use of the restroom that corresponds with their gender expression.

Students represented by the ADF filed a lawsuit seeking to stop the Boyertown High School transgender bathroom policy. The Students claimed that the transgender students violated their rights when they were present together in places of public accommodations, I.E. Bathrooms, and locker rooms. The ADF brought the case all the way to the newly right-leaning Supreme Court undoubtedly confident of a victory.

From 2017.

In court papers, lawyers for the plaintiffs argue that “forcing a teenager to share a locker room or restroom with a member of the opposite sex can cause embarrassment and distress.”

“The district’s policy was a drastic change from the way locker rooms and restrooms have been regulated for the entire history of public-school systems,” they said.

Aidan DeStefano

Lawyers for the school district say that they made the decision to allow transgender students to use facilities that aligned with their gender identity because the district “Believes that transgender students should have the right to use school bathroom and locker facilities on the same basis as non-transgender students.”

They say the permission is not automatic but that when a transgender student requests to use facilities that comport with his or her gender identity, they have “several conversations” with a guidance counselor.

As a part of their briefs, they include a picture of Aidan DeStefano, who graduated last year from one of the schools and is a transgender male, to show why he doesn’t belong in a bathroom that corresponds to the sex he was assigned at birth.

My School Was Right to Let Me Use the Bathroom Consistent With Who I Am – by Aidan DeStefano

A lower court declined to issue a preliminary injunction blocking the policy.

Under the Obama administration: the departments of Education and Justice issued guidance to school districts that recommended that schools allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that matched their gender identity.

But the Trump administration withdrew that guidance.

When it did so, a pending case concerning a student from Virginia, Gavin Grimm, was dismissed.

This is the reverse case, brought not by a transgender student, but from students who object to sharing a bathroom with transgender individuals.

The Supreme Court did not comment on today’s ruling.

Related: Monday Dec 7, 2020 the Supreme Court declined to hear yet another case in which a lower court had ruled in favor of transgender student rights.

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Kelli, Busey is managing editor at Planet Transgender


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