Originally published on Advocate.com August 15 2003 12:00 AM ET
A New York state senator and a conservative legal group have filed a lawsuit charging that a public high school for gay, bisexual, and transgendered students violates laws prohibiting segregation. Sen. Ruben Diaz, representing the Bronx, and the Liberty Counsel filed the lawsuit Wednesday in state supreme court in New York City, arguing that the proposed Harvey Milk High School would break education rules banning discrimination based on sexual orientation.
School officials have said that Harvey Milk High will be open to all students, regardless of their sexual orientation. Supporters say the school is needed to provide protection to students who have been harassed in school.
Paul Rose, a spokesman for school chancellor Joel Klein, told the New York Daily News that the lawsuit is "a frivolous attack on a program that has helped children for many years."
Harvey Milk High School is an expansion of a two-classroom program that began in 1984 and has been managed and financed by the Hetrick-Martin Institute, a gay rights youth advocacy group.