Bathroom bills across the country have been met with controversy.
Now, a Kansas City area student is taking his concerns to the highest court in Missouri.
The lawsuit cites the Blue Springs School District for refusing to let a transgender student use the men’s restroom and other facilities.
On Wednesday, the Missouri Supreme Court will hear the case.
The lawsuit says the district’s exclusionary practices cause serious harm to transgender students. It cites research that shows transgender students who are not supported at school face high levels of harassment, violence and discrimination in schools.
It also addresses some of the common concerns with transgender students using bathrooms, such as some students may pretend to gain access to certain bathrooms. Other concerns include infringing on privacy and comfort of other students.
The transgender male, who is only referred to as R.M.A. in the lawsuit, went to school in Blue Springs since the fourth grade.
The suit says he transitioned to living consistently as a boy in 2009. This includes legally changing his name and gender on his birth certificate. It also says he stopped playing sports because he was not able to use the restroom of his choice, which limited his success in school.
RMA’s Lawyers for RMA says the school district violated the Missouri Human Rights Act.
It also cites numerous other school districts, like those in Alaska, Kentucky and Florida, that have allowed transgender students to use gender-appropriate facilities without any problem.
However, in 2017, the Missouri Court of Appeals held that the State’s Human Rights Act does not protect against gender-identity discrimination.
One solution the lawsuit cites schools for is offering the use of a private restroom to any students who express discomfort.
KCTV5 News has reached out to the school district for comment. They have said that they could not comment pending the ongoing litigation.
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