Administration 'Remains Firmly Committed' to Protecting Rights of LGBT Students
The White House says it is "pleased" that a Tennessee bill targeting transgender students was pulled by its sponsor Monday, effectively killing it for the remainder of the year. Republican State Rep. Susan Lynn's bill, HB 2414, would have banned transgender students from accessing restrooms and locker rooms that best correspond to their gender identity, and would have mandated that students' gender be determined by their original birth certificates.
"Legislation that undermines the equal dignity of all students has no place in Tennessee, or anywhere else," White House spokesperson Jeff Tiller said in an email to The New Civil Rights Movement.
"Like so many other business leaders, local officials and engaged citizens across the state, we had serious concerns about the legislation and are pleased to see the bill is not moving forward. We remain firmly committed to promoting and defending the equal rights of all Americans, including the rights of LGBT students across the country."
The bill, had it become law, could have cost the state $1.2 billion in Title IX funding, but its sponsor said she withdrew it from further consideration after having "learned that our school districts are largely following what the bill says." Rep. Lynn vowed to file it again next year.
Activists are still awaiting Gov. Bill Haslam's decision on another bill targeting transgender people, including students. HB 1840, a "religious freedom" bill, would allow any counselor or therapist to deny service to any LGBT person, or to anyone in general, based on their "sincerely held principles."
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