WASHINGTON, DC — The National Center for Lesbian Rights, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), and The Trevor Project — along with the National Education Association and more than a dozen other organizations — have submitted comments to the U.S. Department of Education supporting its proposed rule requiring equal treatment of transgender students in school sports under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. In addition to the National Education Association, the coalition of organizations includes Family Equality, the Los Angeles LGBT Center, and SAGE.
The comments commend the Department for affirming that Title IX prohibits discrimination against transgender students in school sports, noting the urgency of creating clear federal policy in the face of the unlawful bans proliferating in many states. The proposed rule states that any policy that categorically bans transgender girls or women from playing on girls' or women's sports teams, or that prohibits transgender boys or men from playing on boys or men's sports teams, is prohibited.
"We applaud the Department of Education for drafting a rule that protects transgender students from discrimination and ensures their equal inclusion in school sports," said NCLR Federal Policy Director Juliana S. Gonen.
"With so many states adopting policies that exclude transgender athletes in violation of Title IX, it is urgent the Department of Education finalizes its rule that makes clear transgender students must be given full and equal inclusion in school sports programs," said GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders Senior Director of Transgender and Queer Rights Jennifer Levi.
"Following the wave of anti-transgender state laws we've witnessed that prohibit trans young people from participating in school sports, it is crucial that the Department of Education reject these discriminatory policies and stand firmly in support of trans students with this rule. No young person should be denied the opportunity to be part of a team simply because of who they are," said Kasey Suffredini (he/him), Vice President of Advocacy and Government Affairs at The Trevor Project.
Earlier this year, NCLR and GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defender (GLAD) jointly produced a fact sheet explaining the proposed rule and its protection of transgender students in school sports under Title IX.
NCLR has filed lawsuits challenging state laws banning transgender students from school sports in Utah and Arizona.
The National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) is a national legal organization committed to advancing the human and civil rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer community through litigation, public policy advocacy, and public education. Since its founding, NCLR has maintained a longstanding commitment to racial and economic justice and the LGBTQ community's most vulnerable. www.nclrights.org .
Through strategic litigation, public policy advocacy, and education, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) works in New England and nationally to create a just society free of discrimination based on gender identity and expression, HIV status, and sexual orientation. www.glad.org .
The Trevor Project is the leading suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ young people. www.thetrevorproject.org .