UCB Pride Responds To Letters Between HCPS And Sen. Bob Cassilly About Mixed-Gender Locker Rooms

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Credit: Van Fisher/Patch - Havre de Grace High School

HARFORD COUNTY - Upper Chesapeake Bay Pride has issued a statement praising Harford County Public Schools for upholding Maryland State Department of Education guidelines on transgender and gender non-conforming students.

Their statement is in response to letters sent by state Sen. Bob Cassilly to Harford County Public Schools, where he raises concerns about mixed-gender locker rooms.

In their statement, UCBP lambasted Cassilly for his "uninformed opinions."

"Supporting transgender and nonbinary children—and all children—is not a zero-sum game in which one group needs to be ostracized for another group to thrive," the organization said. "The Maryland State Department of Education has created policies and procedures that affirm the rights of all children and teens."

Cassilly, who is on the ballot for Harford County Executive this November, sent a letter to HCPS after reportedly receiving a complaint from an unidentified child's parents. The child felt uncomfortable after a student used a locker room that conformed with their gender identity but not their biological sex.

"I would like to know by what right the school chooses to override students' natural, healthy, and wholesome desire for physical privacy," Cassilly said. He went on to describe the "mental trauma inflicted on students" as "outrageous."

HCPS responded to Cassilly's letter by citing MSDE's guidance regarding issues of gender identity.

"Importantly, the guidelines seek not only to ensure non-discrimination relating to a transgender or gender non-conforming student, but they also seek to offer respect, safety, and comfort for all students in these sensitive situations."

HCPS has uploaded the correspondence between the school board and Cassilly on their website. You can view the letters in their entirety here.

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