Today, friend-of-the-court briefs are being filed in the first-ever case on transgender rights to go before the Supreme Court, G.G. v. Gloucester County School Board. The case is being brought by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of a Virginia transgender boy named Gavin Grimm, who is challenging a policy in his local school district that singles out transgender students for discrimination and prohibits him from using the boys’ restroom at his school.
One of the briefs features the voices of dozens of city attorneys, including many of the cities represented by the Mayors Against LGBT Discrimination coalition, which advocates for LGBT-inclusive nondiscrimination policies at the local level. The brief was coordinated by the city of San Francisco and New York City.
San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera explained today:
“This is not a case about bathrooms — it is a case about fundamental civil rights. .. Stigmatizing an already vulnerable group is not an American value. Equality, compassion and being true to yourself — those are qualities we all embrace. Passing laws in our cities that guarantee the protection of transgender people has only enhanced public safety and led to communities that are more inclusive.”
For many decades, more than 200 municipalities have adopted and enforced laws prohibiting discrimination against transgender people while promoting public safety and protecting everyone’s privacy. Minneapolis, Minnesota, in fact, adopted transgender protections in 1975 — more than forty years ago, and is now standing up for transgender equality as one of the signers of this brief.
Cities represented both as signers on the brief and Mayors Against LGBT Discrimination include: Albany, NY; Boulder, CO; Rochester, NY; Chapel Hill, NC; Chicago, IL; Cincinnati, OH; Evanston, IL; Los Angeles, CA; Minneapolis, MN; Newton, MA; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; Portland, OR; Salt Lake City, UT; San Francisco, CA; Santa Clara, CA; St. Louis, MO;Seattle, WA; San Jose, CA; Tacoma, WA; West Hollywood, CA; West Palm Beach, FL.