A Wisconsin school district will pay a transgender student $800,000 to settle a lawsuit she filed in a successful attempt to share bathrooms and overnight sleeping quarters with male high school students. Ash Whitaker’s attorneys will get $650,000 of that amount, and she gets the rest. The money will be paid out by the district’s insurance company, after using taxpayer dollars for their $25,000 deductible.
Before the settlement, the case had been appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court after the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in Whitaker’s favor. The court agreed that Kenosha Unified School District “illegally singled Whitaker out for discrimination because he [sic] is transgender.” Whitaker also demanded to be allowed to run for prom king, and won that fight last year as well.
“[Whitaker’s] claimed fees were $1.7 million, so we estimated if we went up to the Supreme Court, and/or back down to trial court to try the case and go through anything, that their fees would be somewhere between $4 million and $5 million,” Kenosha’s attorney, Ron Stadler, told media. “So, it becomes a real economic decision in terms of balancing risks and the downside of being given an adverse decision.”
The Seventh Circuit unanimously decided that a “policy that requires an individual to use a bathroom that does not conform with his or her gender identity . . . violates Title IX,” a law requiring educational institutions that take federal money to treat males and females the same. It was the first time any federal appeals court concluded that the 1972 statute’s phrase “sex discrimination” means “gender identity discrimination.” (Read more from “School District Pays Transgender Teen $800,000 for Refusing to Let Her Sleep, Micturate with Boys” HERE)