trans washroom

Trans student asked not use boys washroom in Toronto school

The Toronto District School Board says it's investigating after a video surfaced of a hall monitor asking a trans student not to use the boys' washroom.

The video starts with the hall monitor asking the student if they identify as a guy, the student responds, "yes," and the monitor says, "that's why you should be using the gender-neutral washroom."

One of the students in the video, Cal, says they were stopped by a hall monitor, Dino, when they were leaving the boys' washroom.

"…he initially was asking Ezra (who is trans) why he was using the boys' bathroom," Cal says. "Erza told Dino that that is where he feels most comfortable."

Dino told Ezra he should be using the gender-neutral bathroom rather the boys' bathroom.

"But he didn't offer an explanation as to why."

Ezra explained he doesn't want to use the gender-neutral bathroom and would much rather use the boys' bathroom.

"Dino maintained his position that Ezra isn't allowed to use the boys bathroom."

In the video, Erza says, "I am not gender neutral."

The monitor says, "You consider yourself a boy," and to that Erza responds, "I don't consider myself a boy — I am not a girl."

Another student asks if the hall monitor would stop any other boy from using the boys washroom. He says of course not.

"I know it might be confusing to you but that's how we delegate here," Dino says.

The monitor says Erza can speak to the vice principal.

In a statement, the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) says the incident is currently under investigation and that they can't speak to specific details.

They did, however, clarify the TDSB's Accommodation Guidelines for Transgender and Gender non-Conforming Students and Staff.

The guidelines state: "All staff and students have a right to safe restroom facilities and the right to use a washroom that best corresponds to their gender identity, regardless of their sex assigned at birth."

"Where possible, schools will also provide an easily accessible all-gender single stall washroom for use by any student or staff member who desires increased privacy, regardless of the underlying reason."

Cal says the attitude of this particular hall monitor is damaging.

"Forcing a trans student out of their bathroom of choice, no matter what bathroom you force them into, is harmful and won't be tolerated in a school environment," Cal says.

The school board admits that they sometimes need to "remind its staff of their training regarding our best practices related to the Accommodation Guidelines for Transgender and Gender non-Conforming Students and Staff."

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