President Donald Trump revoked protections for transgender students in public schools on Wednesday, reversing former President Barack Obama’s May 2016 proposal to allow transgender students the right to use the bathroom of their choice. This action now leaves protections for transgender students in the hands of individual state and school districts.
On Thursday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a stern directive to the State Education Department that schools must protect transgender students. He wrote, “all students must have the opportunity to learn in an environment free from harassment and discrimination.” The governor also noted that, “schools must ensure that a student’s gender identity or expression is not a basis for discrimination and intolerance.”
“No student should be confused about their rights or fearful of losing these important protections,” Cuomo’s notice continued. “We do not and will not tolerate discrimination in the State of New York.”
Gov. Cuomo was not the only state official to make such a statement. Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy signed an executive order on Thursday in protection of transgender students.
“Connecticut law mandates that public schools be open to all children,” the order outlines, “and that such children have an equal opportunity to participate in school activities without regard to their gender identity or expression.”
The order protects “bathrooms and locker rooms in public schools and institutions of higher education” as “places of public accommodation” and rules that no person shall be discriminated against based on their gender or sexuality.
NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo has issued a directive to the State Education Department: School districts must protect transgender students. pic.twitter.com/yBMzbP3uJ8
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 23, 2017