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 2015-07-29
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


  WINDY CITY TIMES

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

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg 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with the fallout over transgender protections since October when it passed a new transgender policy and then quickly repealed it amid protest from anti-LGBT groups.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 del.icio.us stumble upon digg 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

Amanda Lepore releases "I...Amanda Lepore: Make Over Sessions" 2015-07-31
Seattle to host international confab on trans, gender-nonconforming topics 2015-07-29
Torch carried by Jenner to be auctioned 2015-07-29
Entertainment: Nick Jonas; Caitlyn Jenner; Lucy Lawless; RuPaul 2015-07-28
World news: Trans woman killed; Drag queens banned; Rio prisons 2015-07-28
Competing trans legal events set to take place in Chicago 2015-07-28
Transgender student's restroom access case is likely to proceed 2015-07-27
Chaz Bono on stage in "Down the Road" in LA 2015-07-23
India Clarke, a black transgender woman, killed in Tampa 2015-07-22
Queer trans man leaves impact at Northwestern and beyond 2015-07-22
Nat'l: Mayor does weddings; Hawaii speeds trans ID change; Chelsea Manning's fund 2015-07-21
TransTech launches national tech and employment assessment 2015-07-21
Transforming Gender: The Train Station 2015-07-15
Women & Children hosts transgender education workshop 2015-07-14
National: Gay Catholic move; Jimmy Carter; trans health app 2015-07-14
Animated series to feature transgender actress, lead character 2015-07-14
Pentagon to lift transgender military ban 2015-07-13
Navy, Marines make pro-trans move 2015-07-08
ICE announces updated guidelines regarding trans immigrants 2015-07-08
TELEVISION 'I Am Jazz' series documents famed transgender girl 2015-07-08
DOJ supports transgender student's right to appropriate restroom 2015-07-02
Trans activist writes about Obama actions 2015-07-01
Legacy Walk welcoming Ugandan trans activist 2015-07-01
Love is Colorful, Make it Blu film series launched 2015-06-30
ICE has new guidance on care of transgender immigrants in custody 2015-06-29
Undocumented transgender woman interrupts President, calls for end to deportation 2015-06-24
Trans teen murdered in Alabama 2015-06-24
Legislation to lift transgender military ban to be introduced 2015-06-23
OPM calls for ban of benefit exclusions aimed at trans* federal employees 2015-06-23
National referral database launched for trans and queer communities 2015-06-21
Trans teen to guest on USA's 'Royal Pains' 2015-06-19
National: Mich., N.C. laws; bar rejects trans woman; Jeb, Trump run for prez 2015-06-16
Local news: Precious Davis in national campaign; Dyke March planned 2015-06-16
Israel Pride Parade dedicated to transgender rights 2015-06-12
Congress votes down anti-LGBTQ Trans Pacific Partnership 2015-06-12
ACLU sues over discriminatory transgender school restroom policy 2015-06-12
Trans woman petitions for early release from Elgin facility 2015-06-10
NU and Lurie program helps trans kids find their voice 2015-06-10
Former Chicago trans athlete Mosier on U.S. National Men's Team 2015-06-09
Sec Def announces protections for gay, lesbian troops, no mention of trans 2015-06-09
 



Copyright © 2015 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

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.