LGBTQ+ Students Would Get New Protections Under Biden's Proposed Changes To Title IX

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On the 50-year anniversary of Title IX, President Joe Biden announced he’s looking to offer new protections for select populations.

Title IX, aka the Patsy Takemoto Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act, is a groundbreaking regulation that works to combat sex-based discrimination in schools.

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance,” the 1972 law reads

Now, the Biden Administration is looking to revise Title IX and offer additional protections to both transgender students and students who are survivors of sexual assault.

“Our proposed changes would fully protect students from all forms of sex discrimination, instead of limiting some protections to sexual harassment, alone and make clear those protections include discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity,” Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said.

Regarding survivors of sexual assault, Biden proposed amending the rules regarding how institutions handle allegations.

Biden is explicitly looking to undo the Trump Administration’s prior revision, which made the rules “more accommodating to the accused” out of fear that people were being wrongfully punished over allegations.

One of these amendments included lowering the standard of proof from “clear and convincing evidence” to “preponderance of the evidence,” making it easier for survivors to get justice.

In terms of the LGBTQ+ community, Biden proposes increasing protections for transgender students by guaranteeing them the right to use bathrooms that align with their gender identity. Additionally, Biden’s also looking to crack down on misgendering, proposing that the refusal to use one’s pronouns should be seen as discriminatory under Title IX.

Despite these changes, it’s worth adding that Biden’s proposal largely left the controversial issue of transgender athletes in women’s and girls’ sports unaddressed, as reported by TIME.

“The department recognizes that standards for students participating in male and female athletic teams are evolving in real-time,” Cardona noted. “That’s why we decided to do a separate rule-making on how schools may determine eligibility while upholding Title IX’s non-discrimination guarantee.”

While putting the conversation off for a “separate rule-making” process, the Biden Administration’s proposal notably clarifies that “preventing someone from participating in school programs and activities consistent with their gender identity would cause harm in violation of Title IX.”

What are your thoughts on the overall situation?