Wickenburg Unified School District dealing with backlash over bathroom use policy for transgender students

Emotions are running high in the northwest of the Valley Wednesday night in Wickenburg and it all has to do with the district's bathroom use policy for transgender students.

At a Wickenburg School District board meeting, district officials say they're ready to answer any questions or concerns about the policy the district announced this week that students will be able to use restrooms according to their gender identity, meaning that transgender students will be able to use the restroom associated with their identified gender.

There are also single restrooms for those who don't feel comfortable using the women's or men's room.  

There are people on both sides of this issue.

Some parents say they're upset about this decision, worried about what could happen next.

A transgender student says he is the one who went to the principal about this and he explains why it's important for him to be able to use the men's restroom.

Auzzey Donohue, a senior, says, "We're in a generation where things are changing and unfortunately, we have to change with it. We're gonna get stuck in the background. We can change now or we can watch the world change without us."

Brenna Hayes, a parent in the district says, "We're not sure where to go from here. The kids are comfortable with it, we're not comfortable with it …"

Trinity Rink, a senior, doesn't agree with the announcement, saying, "We brought it up as a point that a male could just walk into the female restroom and identify as a female and God knows what could go on."

Title IX protects against discrimination based on sex

The district clarified that allowing students to use restrooms based on their gender identity isn't a district policy, but it's a requirement of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. The amendment protects students from discrimination on the basis of sex.

Recently, courts did uphold that this includes protections for people to use restrooms based on their gender identity.

The superintendent was not able to comment at this time.

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