Controversial Transgender Rights Bill Awaits Action from Gov. Brown

Max Pringle, Capital Public Radio
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A controversial bill to give new rights to transgender public school students in California is heading to the Governor.

A controversial transgender student bill is awaiting action from California Governor Jerry Brown. The bill would allow transgender students to play on sports teams and use the facilities of the gender with which they identify.

Sixteen-year-old Ashton Lee says he sometimes feels isolated. His school district in Manteca views him as a girl but he identifies as male.  He says getting assigned to girls P.E. and having to use the female restrooms unfairly singles him out.

“This will help me be able to participate fully as who I am in school,” says Lee. “I wouldn’t have to hide anything and have to be uncomfortable.”

Opponents fear the measure could have unintended consequences. Carol Hogan with the California Catholic Conference says the bill doesn’t guard against some students acting in bad faith.

“It wouldn’t be a stretch to realize that mischievous or malicious students might use the law to actually intimidate other people,” says Hogan.

Both sides are heavily lobbying Governor Brown.

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