On Tuesday April 24th Morgan Murphy was called to the office of the executive director, Judith Cronin who told her that she was banned from taking her daughter to the kids locker room for her swimming lessons! Though she is legally listed as FEMALE on her Massachusetts state issued license, Morgan was told that "your gender ambiguity has raised concerns with other parents" AND even more offensive, that "you may be looking at the kids with MALE eyes and not the safe space of FEMALE eyes" and that she was "confusing for 10-13 year olds"!
The year is 2012, when people have the right NOT to be discriminated against or have their civil rights violated. "Civil rights include the protection from discrimination on grounds such as physical or mental disability, gender, religion, race, national origin, age, status as a member of the uniformed services, sexual orientation, or GENDER IDENTITY;" By telling Morgan she could no longer use the locker room because of her "gender ambiguity" the YMCA has, in fact, violated her civil rights.
It is imperative that the Beverly, Massachusetts YMCA issues a public apology to Ms. Murphy on behalf of that organization and Ms. Cronin personally. The organization would also benefit from training and education regarding the GLBTQQI community. The YMCA has oftentimes proven through the years to be the center of communities, and in 2012 no person should be excluded from membership for the invalid and salacious manner in which the YMCA has approached Ms. Murphy. The organization could certainly exclude felons, child molesters, drug dealers and the like, but someone whose gender you don’t understand should not be lumped in with these types of people.
The YMCA website claims: "The Y brings people together. We connect people of all ages and backgrounds to bridge the gaps in community needs." - the policies of the Beverly Y contradict this statement.
Remember that misconception and miseducation breed ignorance and hatred and by not engaging Ms. Murphy in discussion regarding her gender identity and trying to learn from her, the YMCA is perpetuating this hatred. Let's work on making this community center a place of love and the community it is intended to be!
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