The North Idaho Pride Alliance Board of Directors strongly rejects actions taken on March 30th by Governor Brad Little when he signed into law two harmful anti-transgender pieces of legislation.
Never in our state have we seen such profound discriminatory actions taken against the transgender community as we have in the 2020 legislative session. Three anti-trans bills sponsored were introduced in this session in the Idaho House. Two of them passed, despite hours of overwhelming testimony against them during public hearings.
HB 500, referred to as the “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” bans transgender girls and women from competing in women’s sports in public schools, colleges, and universities. This is in direct conflict with the current guiding policies from the Idaho High School Activities Association. The second bill, HB 509, called the “Idaho Vital Statistics Act,” prohibits transgender people from changing the sex on their birth certificate. The law requires people to complete DNA/chromosome testing and/or supply medical attestation before they can change their gender marker on their birth certificate.
According to the ACLU of Idaho, more than likely, both bills will be challenged in court for what is unconstitutional and disparaging to transgender Idaho citizens. It is we, the taxpayers, who will bear the cost for our government to fight laws that attempt to solve problems that do not exist.
HB 509 prohibits transgender people from changing the sex on their birth certificate. Why does this matter? Because Idahoans, including transgender Idahoans, need accurate, consistent identity documents that match how we live in the world. Such documents are required to travel, start new jobs, open bank accounts, and enroll in school.
When a transgender person is required to show identification that doesn’t match who they are or how they look to the person checking ID, they face harassment, discrimination, and even violence. Imagine having to show an ID that fails to match your gender to a store clerk, security guard, or TSA agent.
The federal government allows transgender people to update a binary gender marker on their passports and social security cards without any intrusive surgical requirement, as do most states.
The American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and others support allowing transgender people to access ID that reflects their gender without proof of medical intervention or other clinical documentation.
“Self-attestation” is generally already used on state IDs and licenses for information such as height, weight, hair color, and eye color. We should not be required to have a healthcare provider “certify” what someone tells them is their gender. Transgender people themselves know their own gender identity, just like you know your own body.
As for HB 500, the “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” according to the ACLU of Idaho, there has been no evidence to suggest that Idaho has seen any issues with trans girls competing in the girls’ sports. However, this new law will hurt transgender girls and young women. This new law will push transgender girls and young women to the further to the margins of our society and prevent them from finding community and self-esteem in sports.
Transgender youth are entitled to privacy, yet this bill would mandate DNA analysis, hormone level monitoring, or even an inspection of the youth’s “internal and external reproductive anatomy.” Under this new law your daughter, if suspected she is transgender or maybe not what someone else thinks she should look like or act like as a girl, can be subjected to an invasive medical exam of her genitalia to prove she is a girl. This is wrong! Who does this harm? Your daughter, our daughters - all girls and women.
Schools would be put in the position of potentially outing a transgender child—to the coach, athletic association, teammates, and even their parents—which the school is not legally or ethically authorized to do under medical privacy laws, professionalism standards, and other regulations. This will cause more conflict, anxiety, and harm between students.
Elected officials are supposed to be representing ALL of us. By voting for and signing HB 500 into law, they are sending a message to transgender girls and young women that you do not belong, that you are less than your peers and that there is something wrong with you. We reject this thinking and hold up our truth that trans girls are girls and trans women are women.
The United States Constitution protects all people regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. ALL means ALL. And if Idaho is “too great for hate”, that should be meant for ALL its citizens.
The North Idaho Pride Alliance Board of Directors
Region 2 Pride Organizations Solidarity Statement
InterPride - International Association of LGBTI Pride Organizers Region 2 has drafted this letter regarding the two bills signed into law by Idaho Governor, Brad Little, blocking trans girls from playing sports on women’s teams in public school and another making it impossible for Idahoans to change the gender marker on their birth certificate.
Read the letter here: https://adobe.ly/3bKyShC North Idaho Pride Alliance is proud to stand in solidarity with regional Pride organizations that signed on to this statement: InterPride OutSpokane Pride Boise PFLAG Pride Northwest Seattle Pride Somos Seattle Kitsap Pride Gender Justice League Capital City Pride Bonnie J Tinker Scholarship Yakima Pride Bainbridge Pride Tri-Cities Pride Wenatchee Pride Vancouver USA Pride
THREE WAYS TO TAKE ACTION NOW
#1: SIGN THE PETITION
Tell Idaho to Stop Bullying Trans Americans
Boise Pride is calling on Governor Little and the Idaho State Government to repeal H.B. 500 and H.B. 509, two blatantly anti-trans pieces of legislation. Denying trans people the same equal rights as every other American citizen violates the spirit of freedom that this country was founded on. As of now, nearly 700 people have signed this online petition. Add your name to stand in solidarity to repeal this discriminatory legislation.
#2: EXPRESS YOUR DISAPPOINTMENT TO GOVERNOR LITTLE
We thank our partner ACLU of Idaho for all their efforts in combatting harmful legislation that infringes on the rights of LGBTQ people. They rallied grassroots support by engaging citizens to speak up and stand up against this. In their statement condemning Governor Little's decisions to sign HB 500, HB 509 and HB 400 into law, they made this CALL TO ACTION: "The ACLU will see the governor in court. We encourage all Idahoans to email, call, and tweet Gov. Little to express outrage and disappointment at wasting precious taxpayer resources on blatantly anti-transgender bills at a time when we should be coming together for the health and wellbeing of our people."
The ACLU encourages Idahoans to email the governor at firstname.lastname@example.org and call him at 208-334-2100 and tweet him @GovernorLittle to express their disappointment.
#3: EDUCATE YOUR COMMUNITY. SHARE OUR COMMUNICATIONS. DONATE.
In North Idaho, it is especially important that we continue our mission to educate the public on issues that impact the LGBTQ community, allies, and partners. Our volunteers work diligently to gather resources, network, conduct research and share helpful information. Please help us counter discriminatory or false information by joining us in the efforts of educating our community: Follow us on Facebook and SHARE posts. Invite others to our page. Sign up to VOLUNTEER through our website. We need volunteers to help gather and create educational resources remotely from the safety of their homes that can be shared through our newsletter, website and social media. Expand your knowledge base to help others. We have educational resources available on our website on a wide range of LGBTQ issues. We work to seek out and share information about community resources for LGBTQ people in North Idaho.
DONATE. We have one part-time Outreach Coordinator on staff that helps move all these efforts forward and works in collaboration with our volunteer team. This continued work is possible with the support of our donors. Please consider making a one-time or recurring donation today. This is the best way to support our nonprofit during this challenging time. Now, more than ever, we must come together to build a more inclusive North Idaho.