President Trump and his #BrokenPromises to the Transgender Community

By Rep. Jared Polis (CO-02)

Less than a month ago, the White House said President Trump would “protect the rights of all Americans, including the LGBTQ community.”  But last week, the Trump Administration took action to rescind guidance from the Obama Administration that clarifies transgender students are protected under Title IX.  The guidance ensured transgender students are treated with dignity and respect in public schools.  This is another example of President Trump telling people one thing on the campaign trail, and then breaking his promises to the American people.

President Trump is breaking his promises to LGBTQ Americans and their families, and paving the way for discrimination and bullying against transgender students in federally-funded public schools.  Transgender students are particularly vulnerable to bullying at school.  Upwards of 75 percent of transgender youth say they feel unsafe at school.  Studies have also shown transgender teens are at much higher risk of suicide than their peers.  Additionally, studies have connected the suicide rates of transgender teenagers to stigma and embarrassment related to bathroom restrictions.  The transgender community needs a President and a government that will protect them from discrimination at school and at work.  Our public schools are supposed to be safe and civil learning environments for ALL students.

The Trump Administration has an obligation to ensure equal access to education for ALL students.  LGBTQ students don’t need a president that offers empty rhetoric.  They need a president that will stand with them.  Transgender teens also need support from Congress.  This ordeal has made it clear that LGBTQ Americans are vulnerable to a patchwork of civil rights laws across states and local governments, and many are left without protection.  Congress must pass legislation like the Equality Act and Student Non-Discrimination Act to ensure that all LGBTQ Americans are protected from discrimination under federal law regardless of who occupies the Oval Office.