Human Rights Campaign Responds to Federal Judge Temporarily Blocking Trans-Affirming Guidance on Title IX

Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) responded to news that a federal judge temporarily enjoined Department of Education guidance affirming that the rights of transgender students are protected by Title IX.

We are disappointed and outraged by this ruling from the Eastern District of Tennessee where, in yet another example of far-right judges legislating from the bench, the court blocked guidance affirming what the Supreme Court decided in Bostock v. Clayton County: that LGBTQ+ Americans are protected under existing civil rights law. Nothing in this decision can stop schools from treating students consistent with their gender identity. And nothing in this decision eliminates schools’ obligations under Title IX or students’ or parents’ abilities to bring lawsuits in federal court. HRC will continue to fight these anti-transgender rulings with every tool in our toolbox.

Joni Madison, Interim President of the Human Rights Campaign

Bostock v. Clayton County, the landmark Supreme Court decision that protected LGBTQ+ employees from discrimination nationwide, recognized that Title VII’s framework of prohibiting discrimination based upon sex also, by its very nature, prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Title IX, which uses a similar framework, also provides the same protections, as affirmed by the Department of Education’s guidance and numerous federal courts.

Additionally, earlier this month, the Department of Education issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to reverse unjust Trump administration changes to Title IX that limited the obligation of schools which receive federal funding to investigate and address allegations of sexual harassment and assault. HRC praised this move, and notes that this injunction does not impact the ongoing rulemaking process.

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