SCOTUS Denies Case Against Trans-Inclusive Bathroom Policy

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Unsplash

Well, this is a happy surprise. The majority conservative Supreme Court has ruled to reject a case against a trans-inclusive school policy.

According to the Hill, the Supreme Court declined a challenge by parents in Oregon against the Dallas School District. The school district holds a policy that allows students to use bathrooms that match their gender identity. Some parents were opposed to this policy after a transgender student was permitted to use the boys’ bathroom and locker room at the high school and sued the district in 2017.


Once the group of parents sued, a lower court ruled in favor of the school district. The parents then sought an appeal with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

“The District’s directive interferes with parents’ rights to direct the upbringing of their children, schoolchildren’s rights to bodily privacy, parents’ and children’s free exercise of religion, and children’s rights to be free from hostile educational environments under Title IX,” the parents said in their petition for appeal.

Meanwhile, the school district argued that the transgender boy in question had already graduated by the second trial, so the entire argument was a moot point. In addition, the boys’ facilities had private toilets and shower stalls. Plus, the school provided single-occupancy facilities as an option, so the boys “never actually did see each other undressing.”

Photo by Claire Anderson on Unsplash

In the end, the Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the school as well. And now, according to the Thomas Reuters Foundation, the Supreme Court left the initial lower court ruling in place. This means that the group of Oregon parents failed to gain support from at least four justices.

Chase Strangio, the deputy director for trans justice with the ACLU’s LGBT HIV Project, applauded this decision. He believes that the justices determined “that transgender youth are not a threat to other students.”

As Strangio said in a statement, “As we look towards state legislative sessions that will likely continue the attacks on trans youth, the decision not to take this case is an important and powerful message to trans and non-binary youth that they deserve to share space with and enjoy the benefits of school alongside their non-transgender peers.”

Source: The Hill, the Thomas Reuters Foundation

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