by: Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP, President,
American Academy of Pediatrics
"The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) opposes guidance issued last night by the Departments of Justice and Education that eliminates protections for transgender youth in public schools, no longer allowing them to use restrooms corresponding with their gender identity.
"Transgender children are already at increased risk for violence, bullying, harassment and suicide. They may be more prone to depression and engaging in self-harm. These children need acceptance and affirmation, not stigmatization. As a result of last night's action by the Departments of Justice and Education, the simple act of using the restroom may subject transgender students to further harm. Policies excluding transgender youth from facilities consistent with their gender identity have detrimental effects on their physical and mental health, safety and well-being. No child deserves to feel this way, especially within the walls of their own school.
"The federal guidance withdrawing and rescinding protections for transgender students sends a message of exclusion and intolerance, which transgender students encounter enough of already in their day- to-day lives. The AAP voices our strong opposition to the decision by the Departments of Justice and Education and renews our support for the legal protections offered through Title IX.
"Transgender children should be supported, nurtured and cared for, whether in their homes, in their schools or through policies enacted at the state and federal levels."
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 66,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds.