GLAAD is working closely with the family of six-year-old Coy Mathis and the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund in trying to get Coy the use of the girls’ restrooms at her school. Coy is in the first grade and identifies as a girl despite being born a boy.
Initially, Coy was allowed to use the girls bathroom, but after the winter break, was forced to “only use the boys’ bathroom, a staff bathroom that is used only by adults, or the nurse’s bathroom, which is otherwise used by sick children.”
TLDEF announced recently that they had filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Division on behalf of Coy’s family citing the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act. This act prohibits discrimination against transgender students in public schools.
In response to the move by the local school district, Kathryn and Jeremy pulled Coy from school and are home schooling her until the issue is resolved.
GLAAD President Herndon Graddick stated “It’s sad that the Mathis family had to file a civil rights complaint in order for their daughter to be treated equally. Especially since the state of Colorado has already spoken in support of children like Coy. The students clearly aren’t the only people at this school who need more education.”
Coy’s mother Kathryn stated “We want Coy to have the same educational opportunities as every other Colorado student . Her school should not be singling her out for mistreatment just because she is transgender.”
Michael Silverman, TLDEF’s executive director, said “By forcing Coy to use a different bathroom than all the other girls, Coy’s school is targeting her for stigma, bullying and harassment. Coy’s school has the opportunity to turn this around and teach Coy’s classmates a valuable lesson about friendship, respect and basic fairness.”
GLAAD is working with the media to educate people about Coy’s story.