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For Immediate Release: Statement from Chuck Smith, CEO of Equality Texas in Response to Yesterday’s Opinion from Judge Reed O’Connor in Wichita Falls
Posted on October 19, 2016 at 3:46 pm

In late August, Judge Reed O’Connor issued a temporary injunction against the Obama administration’s new guidelines that said schools must allow transgender students to use the bathroom and locker room corresponding to their gender identity.

The federal government requested a clarification, asking whether O’Connor’s ruling truly applied nationwide or just to the 13 states, including Texas, that filed the original lawsuit to block the federal guidelines.

Late yesterday, O’Connor clarified his ruling, saying it applies to every school in the country. The ruling addressed two of the five issues raised by the U.S. First, that the injunction is nationwide in scope and second, it does not prevent government agencies from fulfilling their mission.

Judge O’Connor’s ruling is overly broad and we believe is inconsistent with other federal court rulings. We are hopeful this ruling will be overturned by the Fifth Circuit and the U. S. Supreme Court.

Transgender children deserve to be treated with dignity and respect and not be subject to bullying and harassment for being their authentic selves.  It is the duty of school districts to protect every child. 

While school districts may not cite the Guidelines as requiring them to treat sex as including gender identity, any district may continue to provide access to “intimate facilities” based upon gender identity.