White House Takes Big Step For Trans Rights

Photo: REX USA.
Immediately after calling for an end to controversial "conversion therapies" in the United States, the Obama White House has taken another huge step for LGBTQ rights, this time making a change on its own grounds. The complex opened a gender-neutral bathroom.

The new bathroom is more of a symbolic move, since federal employees have had the right to use the restroom associated with their gender identity since 2011. But still, it is a step toward more open inclusivity of gender non-conforming people at the center of our government.

The timing is also important; several states currently have bills in process that would prohibit transgender people from using the bathroom of their gender identity. (The ACLU has a petition out against Florida's bill, here.) 

In a statement quoted by The Washington PostWhite House Spokesman Jeff Tiller emphasized the administration’s public backing of LGBTQ issues. “The White House allows staff and guests to use restrooms consistent with their gender identity, which is in keeping with the administration’s existing legal guidance on this issue and consistent with what is required by the executive order that took effect today for federal contractors,” he said. 

Earlier this year, Obama was the first president to explicitly talk about transgender people in the State of the Union.

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