Cases & Advocacy

R.M.A. v. Blue Springs R-IV School District Amicus

Status: Closed

Outcome: Victory

Location: Missouri

Jurisdiction + Case Number: Mo. Sup. Ct., Case No. SC96683

R.M.A. is a transgender student in the Blue Springs School District. He sued his school for violating the Missouri Human Rights Act by excluding him from the boys’ restrooms and locker rooms at school.

The school district filed a motion to dismiss. The trial court agreed with the district that the definition of “sex” under the MHRA does not include transgender people and granted the district’s motion. That decision was affirmed by the Western Division of the Missouri Court of Appeals. R.M.A. appealed to the Missouri Supreme Court.

On February 27, 2018, NCLR, along with Cooley LLP, the Transgender Law Center, and Kristen J. Dunnett, filed an amicus brief in support of R.M.A. in the Missouri Supreme Court. Representing a coalition of organizations that work with families raising transgender youth, the brief tells the stories of families raising transgender children in Missouri and around the country. Through their triumphs and challenges, these families help humanize the experiences of transgender youth and underscoring the importance of transgender children being able to go to school in an environment that is safe, welcoming, and does not treat them differently because of who they are.

On February 26, 2019, the Missouri Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals’ opinion. The court held the term “sex” under the MHRA includes transgender people and that R.M.A.’s complaint contained sufficient facts and allegations to survive a motion to dismiss.