Now that we have a federal government that is markedly hostile toward civil rights for the most vulnerable, states continue to take measures into their own hands by passing laws to protect their residents. In early July, Hawaii lawmakers passed a law guaranteeing certain civil rights protections for students based on their gender identity and sexual orientation.
HB1489 is a bill that guarantees Title IX protections for LGBTQ students, which means that the federal civil right to get an education free of sex discrimination will include them, too. There’s already court precedent, but conservatives have tried to exclude LGBTQ students under the argument that “sex,” “gender identity,” and “sexual orientation” are totally different identities.
ThinkProgress has covered numerous rulings by courts. In 2015, a federal judge explained how sexual orientation is sex discrimination. And in both 2017 and 2018, numerous courts have asserted that discrimination against transgender students—which would go under “gender identity”—is illegal.
Hawaii Gov. David Ige signed the bill into law on July 5, 2018.