Published on December 9th, 2011 | by Wild Gender0
Where does ze pee?
It wouldn’t feel like a full week without a trans/genderqueer bathroom incident. So, just in time for Friday, we have a report from the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown. The university has charged a transgender student with disorderly conduct for “trespassing” in a men’s locker room.
Twenty-two year old Seamus Johnston, identifies as male. School records indicate otherwise, but Johnston is trying to get those records changed–not always a swift, easy process.
On Dec. 2, the university found Johnston guilty of disorderly conduct, failure to obey a locker room ban and trespassing in the men’s locker room. A penalty from the university could include one year of probation, which would ban him from extracurricular activities and men’s facilities and require him to undergo counseling. Johnston said he would appeal any sanction.
“I hope that I’ll be allowed to go back to being treated like a normal student instead of a freak,” Johnston told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
Because Johnston was attending a weight training course at the school, access to the weight training facility was restricted to entrance through either the men’s or women’s locker room. Because of his gender identity and expression, Johnston was most comfortable using the men’s locker room. He had been enrolled in the class for nearly one full year before University officials told him on Sept. 9 he could no longer use the men’s facility because of students’ complaints, and offered him the use of the private shower.
After the incident, campus police filed two additional citations, charging him with disorderly conduct. Johnston faces a hearing before a Cambria County district judge Dec. 21. He plans to file charges through a district judge against several university employees, including campus police, for citing him.
The school issued a statement Thursday defending its reasoning and reiterating the importance of Johnston using a “unisex” facility.
“When we became aware of the situation, we identified a locker room that had been used by officials during games. The unisex facility has a single shower and can be locked from the inside to ensure privacy. This facility is available for use by any student, faculty, or staff who desires privacy.”