AUSTIN - A federal judge has blocked the Obama administration's bathroom guidelines for transgender students.
Texas, leading a 13-state collation, sought to block the guidelines nationwide, arguing that enforcing the guidelines upon every school district in the nation is unconstitutional.
On Aug. 21 U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor, Northern District of Texas, issued a nationwide injunction prohibiting the Obama administration from enforcing its bathroom directives against public schools across the country.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s lawsuit argued it was unlawful that schools allow students to use whatever bathrooms and other intimate facilities they prefer.
“We are pleased that the court ruled against the Obama Administration’s latest illegal federal overreach,” Paxton said in a statement.
“This President is attempting to rewrite the laws enacted by the elected representatives of the people, and is threatening to take away federal funding from schools to force them to conform. That cannot be allowed to continue, which is why we took action to protect States and School Districts, who are charged under state law to establish a safe and disciplined environment conducive to student learning.”
The court prevented the federal government from relying on its guidance documents to schools and employers in an injunction that is effective nationwide.
The lawsuit stems from the guidelines about transgender students issued by the Obama administration in early May. Those guidelines, including those listed under Title IX, say discrimination against transgender individuals violates federal nondiscrimination statutes.
Those protections extend to gender identity and acknowledge the right of transgender students to use the bathroom of their choice and that require school officials to treat a student’s gender identity as the student physical gender.
School districts that didn’t comply risked losing federal funds.
Other states that joined the lawsuit are West Virginia, Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah and Wisconsin. The lawsuit also was joined by two local school districts in Arizona and Texas.