The Ohio State School Board of Education is set to vote in October on two resolutions regarding funding for free meal programs for students. If passed, one of the resolutions would oppose the recent measures adopted by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) on the prohibition on discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community.
If adopted it begs the question – would the free meal programs be allowed to discriminate against LGBTQ+ students.
The two resolutions are set to be voted on by the Ohio State School Board of Education on October 11 and 12. If adopted, one of them would expand free meal programs to include all students in the state. The other resolution would instead oppose the new rules adopted by the USDA aimed at ensuring that all school districts that receive federal funding do not have policies that discriminate against students based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.
After President Biden signed an executive order to combat discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation last year, the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service announced in May this year that they would follow the Biden-Harris administration’s interpretation of the legislation and introduced new measures to ensure the protection of LGBTQ+ people from discrimination.
As a result, all state and local agencies that receive funding from the Food and Nutrition Service must update their non-discrimination policies to include protections from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and they must also investigate any allegations of discrimination based on such grounds.
[CA] Ohio State Board of Education resolution takes aim at LGBTQ students, proposed Title IX prot: A resolution that opposes federal protections for LGBTQ students and claims a person's sex is "an unchangeable fact" is expected to come before … https://t.co/2pkqkeRwTA
— Stigmabase | LGBT+ (@StigmabaseE) September 19, 2022
If passed, the resolution of the Ohio State School Board of Education directly opposes such rules, stating that sex is “an unchangeable fact” and that denying biological sex “destroys foundational truths upon which education rests and irreparably damages children.”
Ohio has also recently passed a bill to ban Trans students in high school and college from competing in women’s sports, going as far to include “genital inspections” in their legislation.
According to the executive director of Ohio Association of Foodbanks, Lisa Hamler-Fugitt, the two resolutions that could be adopted by Ohio school officials are in “direct conflict” with one another. “All kids, regardless of their ZIP code, regardless of their gender identity, have to eat,” said Hamler-Fugitt.
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