YWCA Columbus Statement on the Ohio State Board of Education’s decision to pass anti-trans resolution:
Over the past several months, YWCA Columbus has stood firm with our partners, showing up at the Ohio State School Board of Education and fighting for the safety and dignity of transgender students in Ohio. Today, Member Toal’s amended resolution – which originated from Member Shea’s original, introduced earlier this year – passed, 10-7, with 1 abstention. This resolution signals the Board’s support of Ohio’s K-12 districts, should they reject the federal government’s proposed changes to Title IX policy to include protections for transgender students. At a time when transphobia continues to saturate the nation, this resolution distressingly backs the choice to discriminate against already marginalized students.
We are disappointed with this outcome. We had hoped that our work, along with the work of so many others across the state who tirelessly fought for trans youth would prevail, and that Board members would hear their constituents loud and clear: Transgender students deserve to feel safe in school.
We thank our partners as well as the advocates, parents and community members who came to support transgender youth, at times driving 4+ hours to testify against this resolution. And, most importantly, we thank the transgender youth who courageously showed up at meeting after meeting to stand up for their own rights. You are anchored in our fight toward peace, justice, dignity, and freedom for all, and we will not stop fighting for you.
We are disappointed, but we are not defeated. We will continue to defend and uphold the transgender and queer communities of Ohio – until gender justice just is.