Trump Administration Threatens Conn. Schools’ Funding to Ban Transgender Students from School Sports
The Trump administration continues to target transgender students even as the country has passed the sad milestone of more than 100,000 deaths from the COVID-19 crisis.
As the Associated Press reported today, the US Department of Education has sent a threatening letter to Connecticut claiming that the state violated federal law by allowing two transgender girls to participate in school sports events.
“Our country is in crisis and yet the Trump administrations remains hatefully focused on telling transgender students that they can’t participate in school sports. Now, they have gone so far as to threaten federal education funding to enforce their hateful policies,” said Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality. “The department’s view is unsupported by any case law or legal authority, and would overturn almost every state’s current policies and force schools nationwide to ban transgender youth from playing sports of force them to face losing federal money for their schools. It’s another example of the Trump administration’s disgusting efforts to marginalize and erase transgender people from their communities.”
The NCAA recently denounced such efforts to ban transgender girls from playing sports, in response to an Idaho law, HB500, which is currently being challenged in court.
In March, the US Department of Justice also intervened in Connecticut. In a US Department of Justice court filing, US Attorney General William Barr put the federal government on the record in opposition to a Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference policy that allows trans athletes to play sports with their peers.
“That case brought by the radical anti-LGBTQ law firm Alliance Defending Freedom has become a real opportunity for the administration to carry ADF’s water,” Keisling said.
The Education Department letter now states explicitly that the administration believes federal law requires transgender student athletes be banned.
The Trump administration filings follow coordinated efforts by lawmakers in a number of states to ban transgender girls from playing school sports.