Counselor Sues School District Over Secretive Transgender Policy
“McCord believes that God created two—and only two—sexes, male and female” and seeks damages for being required to act contrary to the belief.
A Christian and school counselor in Indiana terminated after criticizing her school district’s secretive transgender policy has sued the district.
Kathy McCord objected to the South Madison Community School Corporation’s “policy that required counselors and other employees to use names and pronouns for students that do not correspond with their sex, without requiring parental notification or consent” and sometimes “required employees to hide these new names and pronouns from parents.”
The Alliance Defending Freedom is representing McCord and filed a complaint containing several First Amendment causes of action related to freedom of speech and the free exercise of religion as well as a claim under the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
McCord alleges school policy “violates her sincerely held religious beliefs”
The legal complaint filed against the district on May 18, 2023, outlines McCord’s objection to the district’s “Gender Support Plan,” which allegedly requires employees to “document whenever the school decided to begin using cross-gender names or pronouns for a student and whether the school would notify a student’s parents.”
According to the complaint, “[t]he new policy did not require parental consent, or even parental notification, to change a student’s name and pronouns, although such action is part of the psychotherapeutic intervention sometimes called ‘social transition.'”
The complaint alleges the district fired McCord, who “has served Indiana students and their families for over 37 years,” after she spoke to a reporter and “explain[ed] her views as a member of the community about the Gender Support Plan policy.”
McCord’s objection stems from her faith as “a practicing Christian” and “an active member of a local church, who bases her beliefs on the Bible and strives to live out her Christian faith, whether at work, out in the community, or in her home with her family.”
“McCord believes that God created two—and only two—sexes, male and female, and that God intended sex as a core aspect of his design for humans.”
The district allegedly violated McCord’s speech and religious rights
McCord alleges the district retaliated against her “for expressing to a journalist her views about the Gender Support Plan policy, which requires her to socially transition students,” sometimes without informing their parents. McCord’s comments to the reporter were “constitutionally protected speech as a private citizen about a matter of public concern.”
According to the complaint, the district compelled McCord to speak by requiring her “to participate in the Gender Support Plan policy, including by socially transitioning students and hiding some students’ social transition from their parents” and by threatening to discipline and actually disciplining McCord.
McCord also accuses the district of viewpoint discrimination:
South Madison’s Gender Support Plan policy, by requiring employees to socially transition students, expresses the message that people can have a gender identity inconsistent with their sex.
Additionally, the Gender Support Plan policy, by requiring employees to socially transition students at times without informing the student’s parents, expresses the message that schools need not inform parents about important actions taken by schools in the lives of their children. (paragraph numbers omitted)
The district allegedly “threatened to discipline Mrs. McCord and other employees who speak a message contrary to the School Board’s message about socially transitioning students and informing parents, and has in fact so disciplined Mrs. McCord.”
McCord alleges the district showed religious animus toward her. The complaint alleges one district employee, “acting pursuant to South Madison’s policies and practices, instructed Mrs. McCord to leave her religious beliefs out of her job as a school counselor.”
The district allegedly refused to grant McCord a religious exemption from the Gender Support Plan policy while “granting accommodations allowing other employees” to opt out of other policies those employees found objectionable on religious grounds.
“McCord has sincerely held religious beliefs that require her not to participate in the Gender Support Plan policy; socially transitioning students and hiding social transitions from parents would violate those beliefs.”
The complaint also alleges the district violated the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which subjects a “substantial burden” on a person’s “exercise of religion, even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability,” to a stringent test.
McCord has asked the court to declare the Gender Support Plan policy unconstitutional as applied to her and to grant permanent injunctions barring the district from requiring her participation in the policy and requiring her reinstatement. McCord also seeks lost wages, “damages for pain, suffering, emotional distress, humiliation, inconvenience, and reputational harm,” and attorney fees.
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.
More power to her. The leftist neglect that the latest “gender affirming” fad is a religion in everything but name.
Which was worse: the Spanish Inquisition, or the “Gender affirming imposition?”
“Nobody expects the Gender Affirming Imposition…”
Our main weapon is pronouns. Pronouns and chest binders. TWO main weapons! Pronouns, chest binders and an almost fanatical devotion to LGBT excess…
Not enough Monty Python fans here, it seems!
Y’all are killing me!!
The only pronoun I use for these mentally disturbed people is “whack job”.
Whatever happened to Milstein?
I’ve answered this when you asked previously.
It’s so easy to miss answers on a comment system that doesn’t notify you about replies.
Aye, that’s why I provided him the link.
The school is fulfilling its role “in LOCO parentis” in the demotic sense.
As valid as the religious argument is, we need to also build a case based simply on common sense. A simple common sense argument will get more traction than a religious one.
You are correct. Hiding any therapeutic activity from parents needs to be a crime for anyone involved. Like now. These school officials need to understand that to do this could land them in jail. Even if only for a year or so; make it a felony, even a low level one to put the fear into their cowardly little souls.
You can use evolutionary biology. We are mammals. We sexually dimorphic. Gender is a weasel word with it’s origin in linguistics. It has no reality when separated from sex. You can have as many masculine or feminine traits as you want and it boils down to what sex are you. If someone debating you brings up intersex people they have lost. Birth defects do not a rule make.
I’ll keep saying it: sex is biology, “gender” is psychology. Only one is treatable, but the “gender affirming” mutilators insist on trying to treat the biology, not the psychology.
I drove through Madison Wisconsin once about thirty years ago. It’s a fool’s paradise.
Madison County indiana
The government schools are America’s best example of totalitarian socialism. They cannot be reformed.
This is Madison County Indiana
A county next door to me. Not exactly a liberal stronghold.
60% + republican
Meant that for gibbie
To the Left “deeply held religious belief” = Right Wing Extremist.
Sort of. They, like most people, just want to say that their religion is the TRUTH and yours is delusion. They have been pretending since the early 1900s that whatever the crazy thing they believe that week is Science! When really it is just a religious belief with Science costuming. Think Fauci in a lab coat wearing a Papal Mitre.
I’m no lawyer…. I’d be interested to hear some educated legal opinions about the likelihood of success in her suit.
I’m no lawyer either, but I can state with some confidence that her chances will be entirely dependent on what brand of douche the judge she gets will be.
This particular gender stuff is just a Trojan horse for “They’re not your kids; they’re our kids.”
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