A Colorado civil rights body ruled that an elementary school in Fountain, near Colorado Springs, discriminated against a six-year-old boy who identifies as a girl because school officials refused to allow him to use the girl's restroom at the school. A report from the Colorado Civil Rights Division condemning the actions of officials at Eagleside Elementary School was released released June 23 by an attorney working with the parents of first grader Coy Mathis (shown, in red), who insist that their young son has identified as a female since early age.
Reuters News reported that the “transgendered” child had been allowed to use the girls' restroom at the school until late in 2012, when the principal informed his parents that he would have to use the boys' restroom or a unisex staff restroom. The parents ultimately withdrew their son from the school and promptly filed a discrimination complaint with the state.
The civil rights body's report, signed by director Steven Chavez, said the Fountain-Fort Carson school district violated a state law that protects the rights of “transgendered” people. “Given the evolving research into the development of transgender persons, compartmentalizing a child as a boy or girl solely based on their visible anatomy is a simplistic approach to a difficult and complex issue,” read the report. It went on to criticize school officials for forcing Coy to “disregard her identity” when using the restroom. Their actions “also deprived her of the social interaction and bonding that commonly occurs in girls' restrooms during these formative years, i.e., talking, sharing, and laughter,” the report continued.
Telling the young boy “that she must disregard her identity while performing one of the most essential human functions constitutes severe and pervasive treatment, and creates an environment that is objectively and subjectively hostile, intimidating, or offensive,” the report read.
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Photo of Coy Mathis: AP Images