George Fox University Newberg Campus.

George Fox University Newberg Campus Photo courtesy of George Fox University, via Wikimedia Commons


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(RNS) A transgender college sophomore has filed a complaint against a Christian university in Oregon after school officials said he couldn’t live with other men on campus during the forthcoming school year.

Jayce M., as he is identified in the George Fox University student newspaper, has been undergoing a female-to-male transition, and next week, a judge is expected to issue a court order allowing him to change his gender on his birth certificate and Social Security.

Now, Jayce is fighting to live in male housing, and his lawyer has filed a formal complaint against the college, alleging discrimination on the basis of sex and gender, a violation of Title IX, the complaint claims.

George Fox University issued a statement on Friday (April 4), saying it was a “complex situation.”

“George Fox strives to be a Christ-centered community and our residential facilities are single gender because of our theological commitments,” the statement said. “The university has researched the student’s attorney’s legal claims and believes they are without merit, especially given the religious nature of the university.”

The university has made many efforts to provide support and accommodation for the student, the statement said.

“While the university did not grant his request to live on campus with males, the student was not denied on-campus housing,” the statement said. “He was offered the option of an on-campus single apartment with a commitment from Student Life to ensuring he stayed socially connected to the community.”

His lawyer, Paul Southwick, filed a discrimination complaint with the U.S. Department of Education, alleging that the school is violating Title IX, which requires universities that receive federal funding to treat all sexes equally. Southwick argues that the school cannot invoke religious reasons for discriminating against transgendered people.

“Title IX does not have a religious exemption for housing discrimination,” Southwick said in an email to The Crescent. “It has a religious exemption for admissions, but that is not implicated here. The Oregon Equality Act also protects Jayce from discrimination in housing and public accommodations on the basis of his gender identity.”

Jayce’s mother, Janice, has launched a Change.org petition with more than 4,000 supporters asking the university to stop denying her son’s on-campus housing request. 

Last year, a Christian university professor was asked to leave Azusa Pacific University after he came out as transgender.

YS/MG END BAILEY

17 Comments

    • You’re wrong – the student is not female, he is currently in the process of transition and has reached the point where he is to be legally considered a male.

      Even without the transitioning, it’s a very bad situation for the university – gender is a protected class under Oregon law, and (as stated in the article) no specific exemptions apply for the religious university here. It’s cut and dry.

      • Cut and dry it is not. You were female now your male. Of course all of this was well timed with your educational endeavor at a Christian University in a state which will make your fight notable. All at the expense of forcing people do what they believe is wrong. This is a case of the school must choose to “change their behavior to coincide with yours” The school has graciously found a solution and has not denied housing. But you must push the limits of christian values to suit your agenda. Your choice, not the choice of other students living with you. Not the choice of a Christian school. Just a political ploy to devalue the belief systems of others. Congratulations! You have just accomplished reverse discrimination.

  1. Rusty Shakleford

    This woman knows that private Christian schools have standards they adhere to. Why would this student, or her attorney or the state or Oregon expect the school to act differently then they say they do?

    This is like a student going into a spanish class and complaining that it’s not teaching german instead.

    • Standards still have to abide by the law, and the law in Oregon states gender is a protected class – you cannot discriminate against an individual on that basis. It doesn’t matter whether they’re religious or not – there’s no exemption here.

      Additionally, he is a man by identity and now by hormone too. That’s what the transition therapy does – it changes the body so it behaves as the identified sex. Even if he was not in therapy, who the [expletive deleted] are they (or you, I, or anyone else) to tell him to be someone he’s not just because he was born with the wrong genitals for which he identifies?

      • Just a small note: that so-called “transition therapy” mess, does NOT change a female’s DNA into a male’s DNA.

        The Christian university has bent over backwards to provide this student with on-campus housing. They’ve seriously done their part to accomodate this person and meet her halfway.

        This is now becoming just another case of LGBT bullies trying to force Christians to surrender their own beliefs. If Christians need yet more proof that the homosexual movement is an evil movement, here it is.

      • Edward Borges-Silva

        Feelings do not change biological facts and all the re-engineering in the world will not change this individuals’ natural gender. Her attitude is wholly uncompromising despite the university’s best efforts to accommodate her without violating their perfectly legitimate policy. Further, I strongly object to your foul language, if you cannot make a reasonable argument without resorting to objectionable verbiage, perhaps you should keep your mouth shut.

      • JD:who the [expletive deleted] are they (or you, I, or anyone else) to tell him to be someone he’s not just because he was born with the wrong genitals for which he identifies? No one! But who the hell is he to tell the school to be something they are not!!! they MUST adhere by his identity and not their own! You cannot have it both ways!

  2. Biological sex does not determine gender. These are two concepts which are not always in line with each other. Religion does not change one’s gender. However, I think as a religious school, they did as much as they could justify by their religious standards. Creating unnecessary skirmishes does not help you advance your cause.

  3. This is just what will happen in the end of time, don’t be surprised there are more to come, sure the scandals will occur but misfortune to those by will happen! As a christian you will just pray..and live in sanctification as Jesus Christ asked us!

  1. […] Transgender student denied on-campus male housing at Christian university (RNS) A transgender college sophomore has filed a complaint against a Christian university in Oregon after school officials said he couldn't live with other men on campus during the forthcoming school year. Jayce M., as he is identified in the George … Read more on Religion News Service […]

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