New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has signed a bill directing public schools to allow transgender students to use the restrooms and other facilities which correspond to their gender identity.
The Christian Post reports that the new bill requires the commissioner of education to develop guidelines providing for the inclusion of transgender students, including allowing them to use restrooms and locker rooms which correspond to their gender identity rather than their biological sex, as well as requiring teachers to address transgender students with the students’ gender-preferred pronouns.
"These guidelines are needed to ensure that transgender students can safely be themselves without fear of being persecuted, and can help promote a culture of understanding and acceptance that will hopefully influence how students treat each other in and outside of school," said Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen), one of the sponsors for the bill.
Many people are wondering why the Republican Christie signed the Democrat-sponsored bill. Christie also reportedly said back in March that individual schools should be allowed to make their own policies regarding transgender issues.
Conservative groups have spoken out against the bill. Len Deo, president of New Jersey Family Policy Council, has voiced concerns over the dangers associated with allowing “opposite biological sex access" to student restrooms and locker rooms. He added that policies regarding transgender students should “be a local issue between parents, students, and the school board."
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Publication date: July 24, 2017