Uptown pastor speaks out against reversal of protections for transgender students

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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – The pastor of an Uptown church is speaking out against President Trump’s reversal of protections for transgender students.

Yesterday, Trump withdrew guidance on transgender bathroom use in public schools Obama issued in May 2016.

Rev. Alisan Rowland of the Metropolitan Community Church of New Orleans said the move doesn’t bode well for the future.

“Until now, President Trump has taken no steps that were overtly harmful to the LGBT community,” Rowland said. “This decision, however, sends the wrong message – not only to transgender individuals but to all of us in a society that prides itself on diversity and openness.”

Noting that although Obama’s order hadn’t yet gone into effect, Rowland said Trump’s reversal of the guidance wipes away hope for a very vulnerable community.

“With this order, the president has sent a message to transgender youth – one of the most vulnerable, victimized and suicide-prone demographics – that their lives and very identities are ‘less than,’” Rowland said. “I hope the president will reconsider his decision. In the meantime, many of us will remain welcoming and supportive of the transgender community. Our church ran an online ad campaign last year that read, ‘Join us! We don’t care what bathroom you use!’ Someday, with hard work and patience, that opinion will be far more widely shared.”