Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Transgender Sister Of Inaugural Singer Wins Bathroom Ruling

Singer Jackie Evancho performed the national anthem at Der Trumpenführer's inauguration and ended up catching grief from anti-Trump forces and from much of the anti-LGBT Christofascist base of the Republican Party offended by her transgender sister.  The thanks she received from Trump was the withdrawal of transgender protections advanced by the Obama administration.  Now, as BuzzFeed reports, Evancho's sister and two co-plaintiffs have won a federal lawsuit against their public school district for its anti-transgender bathroom policies.  The ruling relied on equal protections guaranteed by the United States Constitution.  Here are highlights from BuzzFeed:
The [Juliet Evancho] transgender sister of a performer who sang at President Trump’s inauguration and two of her schoolmates must be given access to school restrooms that match their gender identity, a federal judge in Pennsylvania ruled on Monday, less than a week after the Trump administration withdrew a policy that said schools must provide that access to transgender students. 
US District Court Judge Mark R. Hornak issued a temporary injunction barring Pine-Richland School District from enforcing a policy that said transgender students could either use single-person bathrooms or facilities matching their birth sex. In issuing his opinion suspending that policy, Hornak ruled that the students would likely prevail on their claims that the rule denied their equal protection rights under the equal protection guarantee of the Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution. However, the court sidestepped a national debate about whether civil rights laws already ensure transgender students access to restrooms — a question scheduled to go before the Supreme Court in March. In doing so, Hornak did not address the question about whether the students would prevail on a claim the school district policy violated Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. The court found, instead, that the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee provided relief for the students — and that they are likely to succeed on those claims.
The plaintiffs include three students at Pine-Richland High School, including Juliet Evancho, who is the sister of Jackie Evancho, who sang at Trump’s inauguration. The other plaintiffs are Elissa Ridenour and another student identified only as A.S. Hornak wrote in an order Monday, “The Plaintiffs appear to the Court to be young people seeking to do what young people try to do every day-go to school, obtain an education, and interact as equals with their peers. … [T]he Plaintiffs have shown a reasonable likelihood of success on the merits of their claim that the District’s enforcement of Resolution 2 as to their use of common school restrooms does not afford them equal protection of the law as guaranteed to them by the Fourteenth Amendment.”

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