Metro Weekly

Supreme Court will hear transgender student Gavin Grimm’s case on March 28

Outcome could determine whether transgender people can sue for sex discrimination

Gavin Grimm - Photo: Todd Franson

Gavin Grimm – Photo: Todd Franson

The U.S. Supreme Court announced it will hear oral arguments in the case of transgender student Gavin Grimm, who is suing his school board for barring him from male facilities.

The court will review a lower court’s finding that sex discrimination laws apply to transgender students, and that Grimm, who attends Gloucester High School, should be allowed to sue for discrimination over a policy that bars him from the boys’ restroom.

The outcome of that hearing, which likely won’t be known until May or June, could be crucial — not just for Grimm, but other transgender students from across the nation who are seeking equal treatment in their schools.

If the Supreme Court finds in favor of Grimm, transgender students in Gloucester County will be able to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity.

However, if the Supreme Court overturns the lower court ruling, Grimm could still attempt to sue under the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause. However, other transgender students would not be able to sue for discriminatory practices or policies under Title IX.

LGBT advocates are looking forward to the case and hoping for a favorable decision that will allow transgender students to be treated according to their gender identity, rather than their biological sex.

“This is a historic moment for the LGBT community,” Matt McTighe, president of Freedom for All Americans, said in a statement. “The Supreme Court has its first opportunity to hear the full story of who transgender Americans are and why their families, friends, neighbors, and coworkers love them. It takes tremendous courage for transgender youth like Gavin to be so vocal in sharing their experiences with the world.

“All students, including transgender students, should feel safe and respected while in school,” McTighe continued. “Freedom for All Americans looks forward to continuing to work with our legal partners to be sure that the Supreme Court does the right thing and rules on the side of fairness.”

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

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