A civil rights group is threatening to sue a Kansas school district if it doesn’t train employees about LGBTQ rights in response to an eighth-grade student being suspended from riding a school bus after saying, “I’m a lesbian.”…
The ACLU is representing the student, Izzy Dieker, who graduated from eighth grade and plans to attend the district’s high school this fall. She was suspended from her bus for two days in January but didn’t ride again for two weeks because she felt humiliated, said Sharon Brett, the group’s legal director.
A Kansas Association of School Boards investigation found that the bus driver and the principal of Dieker’s K-8 school sexually harassed her, violating federal civil rights regulations and district policies.
On her way to school, eighth-grader Izzy Dieker was overheard saying to another student on the school bus, “I’m a lesbian.”
For that, she earned a referral from the bus driver and was banned from riding the bus by the principal, citing her “inappropriate language.”
“Once I got home, my dad told me he got a call from the school that I was kicked off for saying ‘I’m a lesbian’,” Dieker said. Now, her parents are frustrated, and the Americus, Kansas school district isn’t providing answers.
“She’s 13 years old and these are adults acting like this towards her,” her mother, Tasha Cooper, said in an interview with local KSNT News. “We’ve had talks about other students calling her names and I expect that because they’re repeating what their parents say. But for the staff, the people that I trust her with, I was angry.”
Dieker’s parents say that they were also told that Dieker refused to listen to the bus driver’s orders, which they interpret was her refusal to stop using the word “lesbian.”
Meagan Hunter worked at a north Phoenix Chili’s restaurant for two years. In that time, she said her bosses praised her constantly and even recommended her for a promotion. After going to training for that new position, however, she said everything changed. “To succeed in this company, I (was told) I would have to dress more gender appropriate,” Hunter told Arizona’s Family. Hunter is a lesbian and said a boss told her she needed to dress more feminine if she truly wanted the promotion.