Fri Sep 25th, 2020
Tags: Bostock v. Clayton County, Eliza Byard, GLSEN, LGBTQ+, LGBTQ+ students and educators, National Center for Transgender Equality, sexual orientation or gender identity, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Vanita Gupta
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, GLSEN, National Center for Transgender Equality, and more than 235 civil rights and education organizations today called for an end to discrimination against LGBTQ+ students, educators, faculty, and staff. Highlighting the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia that it is illegal to discriminate against people based on sexual orientation or gender identity wherever it is illegal to discriminate based on sex, the groups urged all students, educators, and families to advance inclusive and welcoming environments in all schools that celebrate and affirm LGBTQ+ students and staff.
“This landmark decision from the Court is a powerful tool for changing education environments, both at K-12 schools and in higher education, for the better by removing those barriers that are impeding LGBTQ+ students and educators — especially those who are also people of color — from being safe and affirmed in schools and college campuses across the country,” the groups wrote. “Historically, federal, state, and local policies have required or allowed for discrimination against LGBTQ+ students, educators, faculty, and staff, and created environments where they are not safe to learn or safe to work. When students are not safe at school, they are denied an education; and when educators do not feel safe at school, they cannot do their jobs.”
“This decision affirmed what many civil rights and education advocates have long known: Discrimination against people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity has been and still is prohibited under federal civil rights law,” said Vanita Gupta, president and CEO, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “Without question, community members and policymakers must ensure inclusive and welcoming learning environments for LGBTQ+ students, educators, and staff.”
“The Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock is a clarion call to schools and districts across the country: It is time to end unlawful discrimination against LGBTQ+ people in our schools, and stop these insidious assaults on the well-being of LGBTQ+ students and educators,” said Eliza Byard, director, GLSEN. “We are proud to partner with The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, National Center for Transgender Equality and over 200 other national and state organizations to call for an end to anti-LGBTQ+ discrimination in schools.
Together, we will redouble our efforts to make our schools safer for all youth, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression, especially those who are also Black, brown, Latinx, Indigenous and/or people with disabilities.”
“As students, teachers and staff return to school during these unprecedented times, we must all work to ensure that LGBTQ members of our community are treated with the respect and dignity that they deserve. School should be a place where everyone is safe and given the opportunity to reach their fullest potential,” said Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality.
“The Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, makes clear that it is illegal to discriminate against anyone based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. K-12 schools and colleges and universities, with support from the communities they serve, need to ensure that they are creating a welcoming environment for everyone.”