Should school bathrooms be gender neutral?
via AP

Should school bathrooms be gender neutral?

#BathroomsForAll
#NoNeutralBathrooms
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Betsy DeVos' Education Department says it won't take action to protect transgender students who are banned from using restrooms that match their gender identity. Many wonder why schools don't just make all their bathrooms gender-neutral to avoid the problem altogether. But some parents insist separate bathrooms are crucial to making sure students are safe. What do you think? 🚻

THE VOTES ARE IN!
#BathroomsForAll
44.4%
#NoNeutralBathrooms
55.6%

Betsy DeVos' Education Department says it won't take action to protect transgender students who are banned from using restrooms that match their gender identity. The change goes against an Obama-era guidance that provided transgender students facing discrimination a means to file formal complaints.

The Education Department has told BuzzFeed News it won't investigate or take action on any complaints filed by transgender students who are banned from restrooms that match their gender identity, charting new ground in the Trump administration's year-long broadside against LGBT rights.

A spokesperson for the department argues Title IX, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender, does not include gender identity.

Finally on Thursday, Liz Hill, a spokesperson for the agency, responded “yes, that’s what the law says” when asked again if the Education Department holds a current position that restroom complaints from transgender students are not covered by a 1972 federal civil rights law called Title IX. Asked for further explanation on the department’s position, Hill said Friday, “Title IX prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, not gender identity.”

This is not the first time DeVos has spoken out about the transgender bathroom issue. She previously called the Obama-era policy a huge "overreach" and continues to insist the safety of students is her main priority.

The debate surrounding transgender bathroom access has been going on for a while now, and many are asking why not just make all bathrooms gender neutral to avoid the problem? Even in places with trans-inclusive policies that allow trans individuals to choose whichever bathroom they'd like, there is still difficulty in deciding where a gender nonconforming person should go. Gender-neutral bathrooms would eliminate this problem entirely.

As Jacob Tobia of TIME puts it:

As a gender nonconforming person and a member of the trans community, I find that I’m constantly stuck between a rock and a hard place, or in this case, between a stall and a urinal... If we truly seek to #ProtectTransKids [gender-neutral bathrooms] must be implemented in schools, government buildings, restaurants, and recreational facilities across the country. It gives everyone enough privacy, and provides trans people with life-affirming safety.

Gender-neutral restrooms in schools would be a perfect compromise. They would allow trans individuals to go to the bathroom where they wanted while also allowing other students to do the same. It just makes sense.

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