The Obama administration made a “directive” to public schools that they are to open up women’s locker rooms and restrooms to the opposite sex. It is not an executive order. It is not an administrative regulation. This has no force of law or legal authority behind it, but asks schools to voluntarily throw away every student’s right to bodily privacy and threatens to remove Title IX funding if they do not.
Does my school have to comply?
Schools have no obligation to abandon biologically distinct bathrooms, showers and locker rooms. Courts around the country, including one in Pennsylvania, have found Title IX and the Constitution permits schools to maintain restrooms, locker rooms and showers based on biological sex.
Under current law, the threat that any state or school district would lose federal funding is an extremely remote possibility. That’s why the lawsuits just filed against the Department of Justice/Department of Education are so important.
- Governor of North Carolina has sued the Federal Government.
- The President Pro Tempore of the NC Senate and Speaker of the NC House has sued the Federal Government.
- Students and parents at North Carolina public schools and universities have sued the Federal Government.
- Parents and students in Illinois have sued the federal government and their local school district.
- 96 Pa state representatives sent a letter rejecting President Obama’s unconstitutional and unenforceable “directive.”
These lawsuits are a direct challenge to the federal government’s intentional distortion of Title IX protections. The Department of Education is attempting to force schools/states to adopt policies that let men use bathrooms and locker rooms designated for girls, violating their right to privacy, shredding their dignity, and robbing them of their innocence. No one should be forced into an intimate setting like a restroom or locker room with someone of the opposite sex.
What can I do?
1) Be encouraging.
Encourage your school district to continue to protect the privacy and safety of all children in their schools. Instruct your school board administration to protect privacy of all students by defining the word “man” or “boy” and “woman” or “girl” on the door of the restrooms, locker rooms, showers and rooming on school trips based on biological sex. Ensure administrators continue to protect students’ right to use the bathrooms, locker rooms, and showers that correspond to their biological sex without bullying. Respect everyone, without taking away privacy from anyone.
- Two-page response letter to school boards.
- Model school policy related to bathrooms and privacy.
- For answers to frequently asked questions, click here.
- For more about how far President Obama’s directive goes, click here.
- For more resources for schools, click here (resources provided by Alliance Defending Freedom).
2) Be informed.
- Know that federal case law supports these districts, including a Western District of Pennsylvania case which held in 2015 that Title IX and the US Constitution Equal Protection Clause permit separate bathrooms on the basis of biological sex. Title IX itself specifically says schools can “provide separate toilet, locker room, and shower facilities on the basis of sex.” 34 C.F.R. § 106.33. Title IX also states that they can maintain separate living facilities for the different sexes. 20 U.S.C. § 1986.
- Review the legal letter detailing the legal background ADF recently provided to the Pittsburgh Public School district.
- Myths and Facts – Title IX and Its Implications for Schools – Know the myths and facts about the baseless Title IX funding threat being circulated by the Obama administration.
- Know that opening restrooms and locker rooms to those of the opposite biological sex will result in lawsuits for violating student’s and parent’s rights to privacy and safety.
- Know that organizations like Alliance Defending Freedom and Independence Law Center are willing to defend school districts that enact good student privacy policies from any attempts at enforcement actions by the U.S. Department of Education and Office of Civil Rights.
3) Be proactive.
Although Governor Wolf has been pushing a bill that would make it illegal to maintain bathrooms, locker rooms and showers based on biological sex, that bill, HB 1510 and SB 974 has not passed. It won’t pass if concerned parents and students across Pennsylvania make their voice known to their State Senator and State Representative to protect privacy rights and oppose HB1510 & SB974.
Click here to sign the petition and consider visiting them in their district office.
For more information, go to DefendMyPrivacy.org.