Court hears arguments in case against Oregon school district’s restroom policy for transgender students

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) – A federal appeals court heard arguments Thursday about a case brought against an Oregon school district involving transgender students.

The Dallas School District allowed a transgender student to use the bathroom of the gender he identifies with, but some parents sued the district over that policy. The court Thursday heard arguments from an attorney who felt that dismissing their case without their “day in court” was not right.

Last July, a district court judge granted a motion to dismiss a case brought by a group called Parents for Privacy.

The judge’s ruling found that the district’s policy of allowing a transgender student to use the same restrooms as other students consistent with his gender identity does not violate the rights of other students or parents. The judge also found that prohibiting students from using the facilities consistent with their gender identity would amount to illegal discrimination.

The group Parents for Privacy sued the district in 2017, arguing that the policy caused embarrassment, humiliation, and anxiety by using a restroom with students of the opposite sex. In court Thursday, they argued that the case should still be heard.

FOX 12 spoke with an ACLU attorney regarding the case.

“They’re not just saying that it’s okay to discriminate against trans people, they’re saying that it’s mandated, that it’s legally required to discriminate against trans people,” Gabriel Arkles with the ACLU said. “This is an attack against trans students, it absolutely is.”

Arkles feels the school district did the right thing with its policy and feels confident the judges will rule in their favor to dismiss the lawsuit against the district and the state.

The judge did not rule on the case Thursday, so for now, the policy stands.

An opposing group of parents who feel their rights and their children’s’ rights are violated by the policy demonstrated Thursday in Pioneer Courthouse Square.

Copyright 2019 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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