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BALIF Files Supreme Court Amicus Brief Supporting Transgender Student Gavin Grimm

02 Mar 2017 2:43 PM | BALIF Administrator (Administrator)

On March 2, 2017, Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom (BALIF) and Impact Fund filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in Gloucester County School Board v. G.G. The case, brought by 17-year old Gavin Grimm, challenges a school board’s resolution that facially discriminates against transgender students based on sex regarding the use of sex-segregated restrooms. The lawsuit argues the bathroom policy is unconstitutional under the Fourteenth Amendment and violates Title IX, a federal law prohibiting sex discrimination by schools.

The amicus brief demonstrates that the board’s policy is sex discrimination prohibited by Title IX. The brief explores the current treatment of transgender people under federal laws prohibiting sex discrimination and shows that penalizing transgender people because of their transgender identity or their perceived non-conformity with gender stereotypes is prohibited discrimination.

“Federal courts across the country have consistently concluded that discrimination against transgender people, which often takes the form of sex stereotyping, violates laws prohibiting sex discrimination,” said Julie Wilensky, Chair of BALIF’s Amicus Committee. “The policy at issue in Gavin’s case is no different.”

Lindsay Nako, Jocelyn Larkin, and Lynnette Miner of Impact Fund are counsel for amici.

In addition to BALIF and Impact Fund, a broad coalition of 45 bar associations and non-profit and legal advocacy organizations joined the brief: Advocates for Children of New York, Inc., Alameda Contra Costa Trial Lawyers Association, AIDS Legal Referral Panel, Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles, Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area, Bar Association of San Francisco, Bet Tzedek, BiLaw, California Employment Lawyers Association, California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc., Centro Legal de la Raza, Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center, Dallas LGBT Bar Association, East Bay La Raza Lawyers Association, Equality California, Equality Federation, Equality Florida Institute, Equality NC, Equality New Mexico, Equality Ohio, Equality Utah, Garden State Equality, Hawai`i LGBT Legal Association, Hispanic National Bar Association, Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project, Kansas City Lesbian, Gay and Allied Lawyers, Legal Aid at Work, Legal Aid Society, LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York, LGBT Bar Association of Los Angeles, LGBT Bar Association of Wisconsin, Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association, National Employment Law Project, National Employment Lawyers Association, National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance, New Mexico Lesbian and Gay Lawyers Association, North Carolina Advocates for Justice, OutFront Minnesota, QLaw, Queen’s Bench Bar Association of the San Francisco Bay Area, SacLEGAL, Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders, Stonewall Law Association of Greater Houston, Tom Homann LGBT Law Association, and Virginia Equality Bar Association.

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