Obama Administration Includes “Transgender” in Title IX

Obama Administration Includes “Transgender” in Title IX

transgender 3Diane Robertson

In 1972 federal law makers came up with a law known as Title IX that prohibits discrimination in education based on sex (gender). The idea behind the law was that any educational program receiving federal funding had to apply the programs to both boys and girls. In April 2014, the Obama administration decided that Title IX applies to transgender people.

In a 46 page document, the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights states that, “Title IX’s sex discrimination prohibition extends to claims of discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity and OCR accepts such complaints for investigation.”

Although the 46 page document particularly relates to sexual violence, the implications are broad. LGBT advocates have stated that transgender students will not just be explicitly protected from physical or sexual abuse, but Title IX will now protect them from all forms of discrimination in education.

Title IX includes all education facilities that receive federal funding. This change in the law would apply to all public elementary schools, secondary schools, colleges, and universities that receive any money from the federal government.

It is too early to tell how this change will affect schools or how it will play out across the nation. This could very well mean that under federal law, students may choose which bathrooms, locker rooms, sports teams, and dorm rooms they wish based on their perceived gender. If a school does not comply, the student will have a valid claim of discrimination with the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights.

Separate sports teams, bathrooms, and locker rooms have never been a form of discrimination. They are simply an acknowledgement of the inherent biological differences between the sexes. However, it is unlikely that Office of Civil Rights will consider that when investigating complaints from transgender students.

This change mimics a law already passed in California known as the “Bathroom Bill”. Supporters of the law have clearly stated that if a biological girl feels uncomfortable using the restroom or changing with biological boys then she is discriminating. Parents who feel uncomfortable about this are now considered bigoted and if they say or do anything to oppose it, that will be considered discrimination.

In an extraordinary power grab, the Obama Administration is attempting to extend California’s bathroom bill and all of its implications into the public schools in every state in the nation.

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