Rescinded Protection Guidance
Issued on February 10, 2017


President Donald Trump has rescinded protections for transgender students established by the Obama Administration which previously guarded a transgender student’s right to use the bathroom or locker room of their choice under federal anti-discrimination law. Top officials from the Department of Education and the Department of Justice produced a letter establishing their disagreement with the previous administration’s interpretation of Title IX, stating that the guidance is to be disregarded and taking the position that states and districts should be able to make their own policies in regards to this matter. LEARN MORE


President Trump’s controversial Education Secretary Betsy Devos reportedly resisted signing the letter for fear of the potential harm it could cause. Although many states publicly stated their continued commitment to their transgender students, Sarah Warbelow, legal director at the Human Rights Campaign believes that the statement made by the White House, in this case, encourages bad behavior. James Esseks of the ACLU argued in a statement that while this action was devastating, the Supreme Court did say it would decide which interpretation if Title IX is correct regardless of the letter during a case to be heard in March. LEARN MORE

Engagement Resources

  • GLSEN – An organization dedicated to supporting LGBTQ students grades k-12. In addition to information on rights of transgender students, GLSEN offers many programs to help organizers engage school communities.
  • American Civil Liberties Union – Provides a comprehensive brief of the rights guaranteed to transgender students under Title IX, as well as the opportunity to file a complaint through their office.
  • Human Rights Campaign – Works to educate the public on the issues faced by the transgender population and provides a wide range of resources for the group and their family members.
  • Transgender Law Center’s League of Resistance – Building upon their existing efforts, the league aims to “harness community power” to fight what lies ahead.

This brief was compiled by Cindy Stansbury. If you have comments or want to add the name of your organization to this brief please contact

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