A transgender police officer working in Nevada's Clark County School District has filed a federal lawsuit alleging years of anti-trans discrimination at the hands of district officials, reports Planet Transgender.
Bradley Roberts has worked for the school district for the past 22 years, spending the last 20 as a school police officer. At the end of the 2011 school year, Roberts began presenting as the man he knows himself to be. That's when the harassment began.
According to a video report by Las Vegas TV station KTNV, Roberts was subjected to invasive questions about his body and transphobic "jokes," and was barred from using the men's restroom. District officials allegedly told Roberts he could have access to the men's room only after he provided proof of having undergone specific gender-affirming surgery.
While some trans people do seek surgical intervention as part of their transition, not all trans people are interested in — or able to access — such surgeries, which are generally invasive and not covered by most health insurance. Notably, gender-affirming surgeries for trans women have become largely standardized, but similar surgeries for trans men are less common, as there are a variety of options depending on an individual's body and the desired outcome.
LGBT advocacy group Lambda Legal, which filed a friend-of-the-court brief in Roberts's case, notes that Roberts was allowed to use the men's restroom at work only "after a state civil rights agency investigation found that CCSD had engaged in discrimination."
In a blog post about Roberts's case, Lambda Legal drew a pointed comparison to illustrate the district's overreach:
"Imagine if the government told any other male employee that his private parts didn’t measure up to its standards, and he needed to get surgery to be treated like a 'real' man. Or if a boss told a female employee that her breasts were too small, and she needed to get surgery to be treated like a 'real' woman."
District officials told KTNV that in the past year, they have implemented mandatory diversity training for all school administrators. But that training does not extend to school police officers, and as Planet Transgender notes, the district's nondiscrimination policy does not cover discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
Watch KTNV's report below.