Metro Weekly

Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and 50 others support trans student Gavin Grimm

"[We] share core values of equality, respect and dignity for all people, regardless of their gender identity."

Gavin Grimm - Photo: Todd Franson

Gavin Grimm – Photo: Todd Franson

Over 50 companies have filed an amicus brief in support of transgender student Gavin Grimm’s Supreme Court case.

Grimm is suing his local school district for the right to use facilities that match his gender identity.

“[We] share core values of equality, respect and dignity for all people, regardless of their gender identity,” the brief states. “[We] support and defend public policies that protect civil rights and foster acceptance and equal treatment for all of their employees, their customers, and the families of both.”

The brief adds that many of the signatories employ and serve transgender people and all “are concerned about the stigmatizing and degrading effects of the policy adopted by the Gloucester County School Board…which restricts access to public school restrooms for transgender youth.”

The companies argue that such discriminatory policies, including “bathroom bills” like North Carolina’s HB 2, adversely affect employees and customers and undermine their ability “to build and maintain the diverse and inclusive workplaces that are essential to the success of their companies.”

Tech companies — including Amazon, Apple, eBay, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, PayPal, Spotify, Tumblr, Twitter, and Yahoo — make up a majority of the 50 who signed the brief. They’re joined by an array of companies from other sectors, including AirBNB, Gap, Lyft, MAC Cosmetics, and Williams-Sonoma.

“Gender identity discrimination is a form of sex discrimination,” the brief states. “[We] respectfully request that the Court consider the business consequences of such discrimination when rendering a decision in this case.

“The judiciary has historically played a critical role in ensuring equality across all lines, including those drawn according to race, gender, and sexual orientation,” it continues. “[We] believe that transgender individuals deserve the same treatment and protections as all other members of our society.”

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Rhuaridh Marr is Metro Weekly's managing editor. He can be reached at rmarr@metroweekly.com.