Transgender college student Andraya Williams humiliated by Piedmont campus police says enough is enough

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March 31, 2014
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April 1, 2014

Transgender college student Andraya Williams humiliated by Piedmont campus police says enough is enough

By Kelli Anne Busey
@kellibusey

 

Andraya Williams

Subjected to discrimination, intimidation, humiliation and stonewalled by North Carolina Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC), transgender student Andraya Williams tells the TransAdvocate she’s had enough.

On March 19th, Ms. Williams was detained by a campus school guard while exiting the lady’s room bathroom telling her that they had heard reports of a man in the restroom and asked her for her college ID.

Ms. Williams then presented her ID, which clearly identifies her as female. Despite that the guard persisted in mockingly questioning Ms.Williams gender and called reinforcement. When the other guards arrived, they surrounded Ms. Williams eventually escorting her off campus.

The next-day Ms. Williams intent on resolving the incident went to the Dean of student life, who informed her she was suspended for not presenting her ID to the guards.

Ms. Williams told the TransAdvocate the Colleges version was simply not true, and she has proof. “When the guard first approached me, I called my attorney who listened to the entire incident. She heard me present my ID to several officers. She heard me then ask if I was free to leave”

Ms. Williams begun the process of changing her legal documents say she started transition in 2010 and began living in her authentic gender in 2012 when she turned 20.

The school says she won’t be ‘protected’ if she uses the lady’s room until she complies with their demands. “The school is requiring me to show proof of my gender,” says Ms Williams, “but they haven’t specified what they need to see.” Meanwhile, Ms. Williams says she is attending classes but her attendance is suffering. “I don’t feel comfortable on campus” she says “my attendance is only so-so.”

Attorney Sarah Demarest with Charlotte’s LGBTQ Law Center has issued an official statement demanding that CPCC comply Title IV, apologize to Andraya Williams and in the future that she allowed to use the correct restroom without school harassment.

Ms. Williams classmates, community, and even those who have never met her are outraged over her mistreatment. They are organizing a protest on Facebook scheduled for Friday April 4th at 12pm at the corner of Elizabeth and Kings. Ms. Williams said she will be attending and when asked what she would like the school to take away from the protest Ms. Williams responded “it’s time for policy changes and education on trans rights. It’s not OK to discriminate”

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11 Comments

  1. Lisa Futvoye-Shepherd says:

    ALL public servants, especially law enforcement, should be mandated to be bonded and insured, the policy paid for out of their OWN pockets. If no insurance company is willing to take on that gamble, than these
    “high risk” people will be unable to gain employment in these fields.

    If the bureaucracy chooses to hire them without such insurance, then at such time that these government employees abrogate the parameters of their position and are sued by their victims, the already overburdened taxpayer would NEVER be liable for their unlawful conduct and actions.

  2. Guest says:

    This pisses me off so much! It’s absolute bigoted taunting that is still being expressed by ‘martial law’ mall cops! They should apologize to her, and the faculty should demand it! Ah…it must be the fears of cis ignorance that creates the ‘threat’ that is lodged in their small, fearful minds. Get the pitchforks!! So sad for this girl, I hope these folks come to their senses.

  3. Ally says:

    This angers me so much! It’s absolute bigoted taunting that is still being expressed by ‘martial law’ mall cops! They should apologize to her, and the faculty should demand it! Ah…it must be the fears from the cis ignorant that creates the ‘threat’ that is lodged in their small, fearful minds. Get the pitchforks!! So sad for this girl, I hope these folks come to their senses.

    • Mike says:

      Not in North Carolina, unfortunately. More than 60% of voters in this state are bigoted garbage. 🙁

    • Stella says:

      Charlotte is quite the liberal city, so when this happened a lot of students were on her side. The campus really rethought a lot of what they did and this happened pretty much within a week:

      On two occasions in April, CPCC will train security staff to ensure they are familiar with college philosophy, policies and procedures. Such training will be made available to other CPCC employees as appropriate. The college also will post the campus locations of all gender-neutral or family restrooms on the CPCC website. Many colleges around the country are now providing such information on their websites to assist students, employees and visitors.

      After this first series of best practices discussions, CPCC will identify others in the community who will provide additional insight into LGBT issues to CPCC and other educational institutions who would like to learn.

      “Community colleges in general and CPCC specifically have always had an open door, welcoming anyone who wanted an education or job training,” Lowrance said. “CPCC accepts students wherever they might be on the academic spectrum and helps them reach their goals. We want to be sure CPCC remains open, welcoming and fair to all within the college’s policies.”

      Excerpt from http://www.cpcc.edu/news/cpcc-opens-discussions-with-lgbt-groups

      They’re doing so much more than just issuing an apology, and it makes me proud that immediate change is taking place to prevent discrimination from taking place again.

      Also, this is to Mike… it’s not good to stereotype against your own state. I believe that Charlotte runs to the rhythm of its own beat.

  4. The Bad Wolf says:

    CLEARLY the urge to peek in on women peeing is so great that a man will not only live as a woman for years, changing his name and identification, but also typically at the expense of friends, family, relationships, and at a risk to his life from bigots….. all to “pretend” he is a woman, to peek at other women in the bathroom. MAKES SOOO MUCH SENSE!

    • crash2parties says:

      A variation on the theme came up during discussions around AB1266 in CA. The anti-trans fallacies tend to center around blaming trans people for the bad actions of non-trans people.

      “What about if a man pretends to be transgender to watch women in the bathroom” is easily answered with, “then he should be charged with a crime. But that has nothing to do with trans women using the bathroom”.

      A similar argument could be made against allowing opposite sex attendants for people in wheelchairs (ie, that a perv would use it as a disguise to do evil) yet the anti trans people for some reason are reluctant to apply the same argument, even when it is suggested.

  5. […] after the school administration allegedly discriminated against the transgender freshman. As was previously reported, Andraya was asked by a school security guard if she was “a man or a woman,” after […]

  6. […] Williams told the TransAdvocate the Colleges version was simply not true, and she has proof. “When the guard first […]

  7. […] Williams told the TransAdvocate the Colleges version was simply not true, and she has proof. “When the guard first […]

  8. […] Williams told the TransAdvocate the Colleges version was simply not true, and she has proof. “When the guard first approached me, […]

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