The Trump administration revoked the Obama administration’s regulation extending certain protections to transgender students.
The Department of Justice and the Department o Education issued new guidelines Wednesday evening rolling back the Obama policies, citing a need to further consider legal issues surrounding transgender bathroom policies.
The guidelines reportedly come over the objection of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos who expressed concern over protections to students.
The guidelines by the previous administration required public schools to allow children to use bathrooms and other facilities that correspond to their gender identities, not necessarily the gender of their birth. The Obama administration had pushed the regulation in May 2016, threatening to withhold federal funding if schools should force transgender students to use bathrooms against their gender identity.
“[We] had decided to withdraw and rescind the above-referenced guidance documents in order to further and more completely consider the legal issues involved,” the DOJ and DOE said in a memo on Wednesday. “The Departments thus will not rely on the views expressed within them.”
“Please note that this withdrawal of these guidance documents does not leave students without protections from discrimination, harassment or bullying,” the departments added. “All schools must ensure that all students, including LGBT students, are able to learn and thrive in a safe environment.”
In reversing the regulation, the Trump administration will likely inflame passions on a new front for an already embattled presidency that has been the subject of protests from coast to coast.
A few hundred people gathered in front of the White House in order to protest Trump’s action, waving rainbow flags and chanting: “No hate, no fear, trans students are welcome here.”