The trans teenager at the centre of a key lawsuit to be allowed to use a gender-appropriate bathroom has failed to secure a hearing before he graduates.
In early March it was announced that the Supreme Court would not go ahead with a planned hearing on transgender rights, in light of the Trump administration’s removal of key protections.
The highest court in the US had been set to hear the case of Virginian trans teen Gavin Grimm, whose school ordered him to use a toilet that correspond with his “biological gender”.
Grimm is suing the Gloucester County School Board with help from the American Civil Liberties Union, arguing that the policy violated his right to freedom from discrimination.
But the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected a request from Grimm’s attorneys asking for a May hearing in order to achieve a ruling before the teenager graduates.
The teen appeared at the US Congress earlier this week, taking aim at President Trump, and his administration, for a policy which rolled back guidance in favour of trans teens introduced under the Obama administration.
Invited by House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Grimm said: “The guidance had a very simple message: treat trans students with dignity and respect them for who they are,” Grimm told the congressional panel on Thursday.
“The decision to withdraw the guidance sent a terrible message to some of the most vulnerable people,” Grimm added.
“That President Trump — the leader of our country — and his administration do not care about protecting you from discrimination.”
Saying he was “so disappointed” in the decision to roll back the guidance, the 17-year-old said: “Actions speak far louder than words, and the message sent with this action could not have been more damaging for trans youth.”
The case was thrown into disarray after the Trump administration acted to withdraw the transgender protections the case partly relied on.
The case had hinged on the Obama administration’s guidance extending Title IX civil rights protections to outlaw discrimination based on gender identity.
However, after the Trump administration withdrew the protections, the Supreme Court opted to send the case back to the lower court.
In a notice, the justices sent the case back to the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals for reconsideration following the federal government’s policy change.
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer previously hinted the administration had sought to send a message to the Supreme Court by yanking the protections.
He said: “The guidance [the administration] puts forward obviously sends a signal to the Court on where the administration stands on this issue.”