Monday, 24 September, 2018

Companies back transgender rights in Supreme Court fight

Sherri Watson | 03 March, 2017, 02:05

U.S. Supreme Court clerk Scott Harris has informed three groups that the caption on their amicus briefs should refer to a transgender teen with a masculine pronoun.

The Southern Coalition for Social Justice had filed a brief in support of plaintiff's in the case arguing that the state's unnecessary use of race in redistricting fractured African-American communities and packed black voters into as few districts as possible and thus violating the U.S. Constitution. Laverne, Caitlyn and her "I Am Cait" co-stars, Jen Richards and Zackary Drucker. all sign on in support. The case comes in the midst of increased public attention and scrutiny concerning the rights of transgender students.

But in Wednesday's letter, Duncan repeated language included in the school board's main high court brief, which urges the justices to resolve "whether, properly interpreted, Title IX and its regulations require access to sex-separated facilities based on gender identity". It's being viewed as a quintessential case for trans rights going forward, but a move from the Trump administration might have mucked the whole thing up. Lawyers for the transgender youth involved in the case - a 17-year-old high school senior identified publicly as Gavin Grimm - also argued that delay in settling the legal question risks actual harm, physical and emotional, to transgender youths across the nation. "The Supreme Court overruled the way in which the district court analyzed the case". (Case No. 16-273) in light of the fact President Donald Trump's administration last week withdrew two Obama-era guidance documents that called on schools to respect the wishes of transgender students when it came to restrooms and locker rooms. "It's disgraceful that the school board is discriminating against children and that members of the community encouraged the board to discriminate in the name of religion".

That second question has even larger implications beyond schools, as other agencies - including, most notably, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission - have interpreted the sex discrimination bans in other laws to include bans on anti-transgender discrimination as well.

When the District Court panel initially considered the case, it held that race predominates only where there is an "actual conflict between traditional redistricting criteria and race". Although the board did not say so directly, such a change might allow Gorsuch - whose confirmation hearing is scheduled to begin on March 20, and whom Republicans reportedly hope to confirm before the April sitting starts - to participate in the oral argument. The two sides are not in complete harmony, however, on what should happen next: G.G. today urged the justices to proceed full speed ahead with the case, which is now scheduled for oral argument on March 28, while the school board suggested that the case should be put off, at least until April, to allow the federal government to weigh in.