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New Jersey files 'emergency' lawsuits against school districts over trans notification policy, claiming 'outing' children to parents could cause 'irreversible harms'
Democratic New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (Photographer: Aristide Economopoulos/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

New Jersey files 'emergency' lawsuits against school districts over trans notification policy, claiming 'outing' children to parents could cause 'irreversible harms'

Democratic New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy's administration filed three "emergency" lawsuits on Wednesday against several school districts that implemented new policies requiring staff to notify parents if their child expresses the desire to change their gender identity.

The administration filed the lawsuits against Middletown, Marlboro, and Manalapan-Englishtown school districts just one day after the policies were approved. New Jersey is seeking a temporary restraining order to block the policies.

Middletown school district's policy would require teachers and other school staff to notify parents when their child chooses to change their name or pronouns or requests to use a restroom that does not align with their biological sex.

The lawsuit, filed by New Jersey Attorney General Matt Platkin against the kindergarten through 12th-grade district, claimed that the notification policy could "irreparably harm transgender students."

"'Outing' transgender, gender non-conforming, and non-binary students against their will poses serious mental health risks; threatens physical harm to students, including increased risk of suicide; and shirks the District's duty to create a safe and supportive learning environment for all," it stated.

Murphy's administration claimed the policies should be tossed for "unlawful discrimination against transgender, gender non-conforming, and non-binary students" that could cause "drastic, irreversible harms."

"In New Jersey, we will not tolerate any action by schools that threatens the health and safety of our young people. Without question, the discriminatory policies passed by these Boards of Education, if allowed to go into effect, will harm our kids and pose severe risk to their safety," Platkin stated. "Simply put, these policies violate our laws, and we will not relent in protecting our LGBTQ+ community — especially our children — from discrimination."

Last month, Murphy criticized a similar policy rolled out by the Hanover Township Board of Education, stating that "requiring staff to 'out' LGBTQ students to their parents violates the rights of our students — jeopardizing their well-being and mental health."

Murphy expressed support for Platkin's decision to challenge the policy.

Marlboro and Manalapan-Englishtown school districts, which serve kindergarten through eighth grade, implemented comparable policies that differed from Middletown's regarding when parents should be notified and whether school officials should be included in the conversation.

Marlboro's policy requires "the principal or designee" to first talk with the student before alerting parents. Manalapan-Englishtown's policy requires parents to be notified if their child requests accommodations regarding their gender identity.

Marlboro school board attorney Marc Zitomer claimed that nothing about the district's policy could be considered "discriminatory" or "improper."

"It is our position that keeping parents in the dark about important issues involving their children is counterintuitive and contrary to well-established U.S. Supreme Court case law that says that parents have a constitutional right to direct and control the upbringing of their children," Zitomer stated.

Fox News Digital reported that neither the governor's office nor the three school districts replied to a request for comment.

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Candace Hathaway

Candace Hathaway

Candace Hathaway is a staff writer for Blaze News.
@candace_phx →