Box Elder refuses to comply with transgender bathroom order

A new sticker designates a gender neutral bathroom at Nathan Hale high school Tuesday, May 17, 2016, in Seattle. President Obama’s directive ordering schools to accommodate transgender students has been controversial in some places but since 2012 Seattle has mandated that transgender students be able to use of the bathrooms and locker rooms of their choice. Nearly half of the district’s 15 high schools already have gender neutral bathrooms and one high school has had a transgender bathroom for 20 years. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

BRIGHAM CITY, Utah (AP) — A northern Utah school district is refusing to comply with the Obama administration’s directive to let transgender students use bathrooms that match their gender identity.

KSL-TV reports (http://bit.ly/20L2bFa ) that Box Elder School Superintendent Ron Tolman sent a letter to parents explaining that schools in his district will instead continue to work with parents whose children have “unique requirement” on a case-by-case basis. Tolman says he won’t sacrifice the rights of the general population for political reasons.

LGBT advocates in Utah have applauded the directive as an important, potentially life-saving rule that sent an important message to transgender students that they are accepted.

But many of Utah’s conservative leaders have criticized the order as federal overreach. Utah this week joined 10 other states to sue over the directive.

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