Aug 26, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Virginia school board to pay $1.3 million to Gavin Grimm

Picture of Gavin Grimm

Gavin Grimm. Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

A Virginia school board will pay $1.3 million to Gavin Grimm, a transgender man who sued his Gloucester County high school in 2015 after being denied access to the boys' restroom.

Driving the news: The settlement comes two months after the Supreme Court declined to hear the board's appeal of a lower-court ruling that allowed transgender students to use the bathrooms that correspond to the gender with which they identify.

  • There are now no legal proceedings left, finally marking an end to Grimm's case.

What they're saying: "Rather than allow a child equal access to a safe school environment, the Gloucester School Board decided to fight this child for five years in a costly legal battle that they lost," said Grimm in a statement.

  • "I hope that this outcome sends a strong message to other school systems, that discrimination is an expensive losing battle."
  • "We are glad that this long litigation is finally over and that Gavin has been fully vindicated by the courts, but it should not have taken over six years of expensive litigation to get to this point," said Grimm's lawyer, Josh Block from the American Civil Liberties Union.
  • "After a year in which state legislatures have introduced an unprecedented number of bills targeting trans youth, we hope that the fee award will give other school boards and lawmakers pause before they use discrimination to score political points."

The big picture: Grimm's case marks the first time that a federal court held that Title IX protects trans students' rights to use restrooms that match the gender they identify with, per Buzzfeed News.

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