This week, the U.S. Department of Education closed the case of Jayce M., a trans man attending the Christian school George Fox University who was denied on-campus housing because of his gender identity.
After being told several months ago that he couldn’t live on campus because he’s trans, Jayce filed a Title IX complaint with the Dept. of Ed., right around the same time the Dept. clarified that Title IX does protect trans students. But the school formally (and secretly) requested a religious exemption to Title IX’s trans student protections.
In a matter of a few short months, the school was granted a religious exemption allowing them to discriminate freely against transgender students. This process usually takes years.
Jayce is simply baffled the college he knows and loves has dug in like this. “I’m shocked and disappointed that the federal government has given George Fox permission to discriminate against me and is allowing it to do so with federal funds,” he says. “But I’m not giving up. I deserve to be treated like the other men on campus. Apparently, the university disagrees, as they have made clear by forcing me to live off-campus. The university is operating under the doctrine of ‘separate but equal,’ and the religious exemption they received now gives the government’s stamp of approval to what they are doing. My own tax dollars will fund the university’s discrimination against me. I don’t understand it and I don’t think it is fair.”
So, while Jayce waits to plan his future–doing so honestly and openly, it seems the ED and GFO choose stall tactics and subterfuge. While each of his peers can make plans and move forward, Jayce once again waits–on the outside. Because it’s in George Fox’s best “religious interests”?
I am so goddamn sick of hearing about religion as an excuse to deny people basic rights.
valerie || amy winehouse
since I’ve come on home
well, my body’s been a mess
and I’ve missed your ginger hair
and the way you like to dress