Pro Bono News
Medical, Civil Rights, Student Groups Ask Court to Back Trans Student Rights (IL)
Tuesday, March 27, 2018
- Windy City Times
Medical, Civil Rights, Student Groups Ask Court to Back Trans Student Rights
"CHICAGO — A range of experts from Illinois and beyond — with expertise in civil rights, medical care, and the struggles for acceptance as a transgender student — are asking the state appellate court to reverse a decision to single out and limit a female student's use of the girls' locker room because she is transgender. This support for Nova Maday, a senior in District 211 based in Palatine, comes in three "friend of the court" briefs filed Friday. A circuit court judge previously denied Ms. Maday a preliminary injunction to use the locker room because he incorrectly concluded that the Illinois Human Rights Act does not require schools in the state to allow all students equal use of school facilities, including locker rooms. Ms. Maday has appealed the decision to the Illinois Appellate Court and also filed her own brief on Friday.
"It is incredible to see the outpouring of support from all these groups and individuals," said Ms. Maday in response to the filings. "I am grateful for this talented coalition of groups who fight for the rights of people facing discrimination because of their race, gender, disability, and other ways in which they are seen as different — and so many major medical groups join this fight. But the stories of other students is the most moving. To hear how other students have attempted to navigate these issues is really inspiring."
"I am confident that these arguments will be influential with the court."
One brief filed on behalf of Ms. Maday is authored on behalf of twelve ( 12 ) groups that work to advance civil and human rights in Illinois. These groups emphatically reject the notion that Illinois Human Rights Act does not provide students in our state's schools the same protections afforded to employees, tenants, patients, and customers at a restaurant or other clothing store. The groups make clear that interpreting the state's most important tool for fighting discrimination in a fashion that permits discrimination will harm not only students who are transgender, but many other students as well.
This brief is co-signed by the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, the Association of Latino Men for Action, the Center on Halsted, the Chicago Council of Lawyers, Citizen Action, the Edwin F. Mandel Legal Aid Clinic, Equality Illinois, Equip for Equality, PFLAG McHenry, the Prairie Pride Coalition, the Chicago Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center..."