Harrison Central transgender student skips graduation
Judge refuses to bar school from forcing her to wear boys clothes to graduation
A U.S. District Court judge denied a temporary injunction that would have allowed a transgender girl to wear female clothes to the Harrison Central High School graduation on Saturday.
The student, identified only as L.B. in court records, was represented by the American Civil Liberties Union in an emergency hearing Friday before U.S. District Court Judge Taylor McNeel.
The order read that “… for the reasons stated on the record at the hearing held on May 19, 2023, plaintiff’s motion for temporary restraining order is denied.”
The Associated Press reported that the student did not participate in her graduation ceremony because school officials told her to dress like a boy and a federal judge did not block the officials’ decision, an attorney for the girl’s family said Saturday.
Linda Morris, staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union’s Women’s Rights Project, said the ruling handed down late Friday by U.S. District Judge Taylor McNeel in Gulfport, Mississippi, “is as disappointing as it is absurd.”
“Our client is being shamed and humiliated for explicitly discriminatory reasons, and her family is being denied a once-in-a-lifetime milestone in their daughter’s life,” Morris said. “No one should be forced to miss their graduation because of their gender.”
The ACLU confirmed that the 17-year-old girl — listed in court papers only by her initials L.B. — would skip the Saturday ceremony for Harrison Central High School in Gulfport.