Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-04-26
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Uncertain future for Aurora school trans committee
by Kate Sosin, Windy City Times
2012-12-07

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Advocates in Aurora are growing concerned that a committee charged with creating a transgender student policy for Dist. 131 will be disbanded.

East Aurora School Dist. 131 has been dealing with the fallout over transgender protections since October when it passed a new transgender policy and then quickly repealed it amid protest from anti-LGBT groups.

Now, some worry that the school board is poised to disband a committee formed to re-write those protections, after officials postponed the committee's next meeting.

The controversy started this fall when the Dist. 131 voted to adopt protections for transgender students. The Illinois Family Institute (IFI), an Illinois-based anti-gay organization, vociferously opposed the policy on its website. The board voted to repeal the policy just days later.

Intending to craft new protections for trans students, the district formed a committee of more than 20. But a recent meeting left some members worried for their safety.

"It was the weirdest experience I have ever been through," said Joanie Rae Wimmer, an equal rights attorney who sits on the committee. "I was a little scared after everything that happened."

Committee members had expected that opponents of the transgender policy would flood its Nov. 29 meeting.

More than 100 people attended the meeting, according to a Beacon-News report.

But the level of intensity left some feeling scared. Several spoke out against the transgender policy, taking up the bulk of the 90-minute scheduled meeting.

Wimmer said that throughout, the meeting, a man stood directly behind her. At some point late in the meeting, he accused Wimmer of trying to put her "lifestyle" onto Aurora children, she said.

At the conclusion of the meeting, committee chair and school board member Anita Lewis, announced that the committee's Dec. 13 had been postponed. The Beacon-News reported that Lewis said committee members were worried about their safety.

Lewis could not be reached for comment. Dist. spokesperson Clayton Muhammad did not respond to requests to comment.

Crystal Ann Gray of U.S. Transgender Advocacy is one committee member who had concerns. Gray reported that she was greeted at the door to the meeting by people in camouflage with badges that read "chaplain." Gray said she was kicked in the leg on the way into the meeting.

"Safety was definitely an issue," said Gray.

Sarah Schriber of the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance described the meeting as "shocking."

"I didn't feel unsafe in the room," said Schriber. "But I can very well imagine that others did."

IFI recounted a different version of events on its website.

In a post on the IFI website, Laurie Higgins, cultural analyst for IFI, noted that the committee was not elected and included people from outside the community.

"Over 20 people, including a high school student, voiced their opposition to any policy that would permit boys and girls to use the restrooms and locker rooms designated for those of the opposite sex," Higgins wrote. "And they expressed their views with unapologetic, unself-conscious, bold, and impassioned conviction, often with the help of a translator."

But while members of the committee expressed concerns about safety, they want the meetings to continue.

Wimmer said she believes that the postponement of the meetings signals that the school is again caving to the demands of IFI, largely seen as instrumental in overturning the first policy.

While advocates had expected to hear from opponents Nov. 29, they also expected Dec. 14 to hear the side of supporters.

Still, committee members interviewed said they had not received official word that the committee had been suspended yet.


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Chay Reed, a Black transgender woman, killed in Miami, NCAVP responds 2017-04-27 - NCAVP mourns the homicide of Chay Reed, a Black transgender woman killed in Miami, Florida; the 9th reported killing of a transgender person ...


Gay News

RuPaul, Grimm named to TIME 100 list 2017-04-26 - TIME Magazine named entertainer RuPaul and trans activist Gavin Grimm to the 2017 TIME 100, its annual list of the 100 most influential ...


Gay News

Jenner, Sidibe, Gay, Waters part of CHF's sessions 2017-04-26 - Caitlyn Jenner, actress Gabourey Sidibe and author Roxane Gay are among those who will be part of the Chicago Humanities Festival's ( CHF's ...


Gay News

National roundup: Idaho trans suit, skydiver case, Aaron Hernandez 2017-04-25 - Lambda Legal filed a federal lawsuit challenging Idaho's refusal to allow transgender people to correct the gender on their birth certificates, according to ...


Gay News

Entertainment news: 'Feud,' Jackie Warner, Luke Evans, Laverne Cox 2017-04-25 - Fans of Ryan Murphy's Feud: Bette and Joan have come to learn all about the tumultuous and tense relationship between Bette Davis and ...


Gay News

Report: States failing trans, gender-expansive, gender-nonconforming youth 2017-04-23 - ( New York, April 24, 2017 ) — A new report published today, Safe Havens: Closing the Gap Between Recommend Practice and Reality ...


Gay News

Criminal HIV-transmission charges dropped against suburban man 2017-04-21 - Criminal charges have been dropped against a Wilmette personal trainer who last year was accused of criminal transmission of HIV. Prosecutors for ...


Gay News

Champions for transgender equity honored at Nat'l Trans HIV Testing Day event 2017-04-21 - Chicago, IL — April 21, 2017 —. : South Side Help Center, Affinity Community Services and Coalition for Justice & Respect collaborated to ...


Gay News

Film with trans teen gets restricted 'R' rating from MPAA, petition launched 2017-04-20 - New York — GLAAD, the world's largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization, today continued calls for the Motion Picture Association of America ( MPAA ...


Gay News

Trans-advocacy groups demand DCFS stop stealing trans kids 2017-04-19 - Motivated by the case of a transgender child that the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services ( DCFS ) seized from an ...


 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 


Sponsor

Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.