Idaho Press: Student leaders criticize Little over transgender laws

Two new laws restricting transgender rights are “unnecessary, potentially expensive, and may produce various legal repercussions,” student leaders from Idaho’s four-year higher education institutions said in a joint letter to Gov. Brad Little.

“The text and intent of these bills exhibit blatant transphobia,” 28 student leaders from Boise State University, the University of Idaho, Idaho State University and Lewis-Clark State College said in the letter, dated Wednesday. Betsy Russell of the Idaho Press wrote about the letter Thursday.

The students took Little to task for signing two bills into law: House Bill 500, which bars transgender girls and women from playing in girls’ and women’s sports; and House Bill 509, which prohibits transgender Idahoans from changing the gender marker on their birth certificates.

Little signed both bills on March 30. Both new laws are already being challenged in court.

“Whether (Little) can do anything about it or not, at least he knows how we feel, and the general public knows how we feel,” U of I student Senate member Aaron Bharucha told Russell. Bharucha is a co-author of the letter.

Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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