By Benji Douglas
They sound like atrocities committed by foreign autocratic regimes, but it’s happening right here in America: “teens forced to strip, harassed, and banned from bathrooms.” A new report by Human Rights Watch accuses American schools of systematically violating the human rights of trans teens all over the country.
The report cites specific examples, and they are chilling. In one, a trans girl in Texas was forced to strip in the boys’ locker room in front of a bunch of other male students. She had already been assaulted once when the school made her do this.
A mother described how the school forced her son into a girls’ bathroom. After he spoke about contemplating suicide, she moved him to a school that recognized his gender. Many people spoke about the negative health consequences of avoiding bathrooms altogether, which is what cruel bathroom bans force trans people to do.
As a result: infection, dehydration, urination tract and kidney problems. And that’s to say nothing of the mental health issues.
The report also makes an important observation: not all students want to use gender-segregated facilities. Many are non-binary, or genderqueer, or whatever term you want to use for someone who identifies as neither male nor female. Maybe if schools stopped gender-segregating and spying down students’ pants, we wouldn’t have so many problems.
This article originally appeared on Queerty
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