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Apple Speaks Out Against President Trump’s Rollback of Transgender Student Protections

February 23, 2017, 12:55 PM UTC
Apple Introduces iPhone 5
Photo by Justin Sullivan — Getty Images

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump’s administration ended federal protections for transgender students that allowed them to use bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender image. But only hours after the announcement, Apple publicly spoke out against it.

“Apple believes everyone deserves a chance to thrive in an environment free from stigma and discrimination,” the company said in a statement to Axios. “We support efforts toward greater acceptance, not less, and we strongly believe that transgender students should be treated as equals. We disagree with any effort to limit or rescind their rights and protections.”

The directive was first issued after North Carolina passed the notorious “bathroom bill“—one that required transgender students to use bathrooms that matched the sex on their birth certificate. When the protections were passed, the Obama administration cited nondiscrimination laws, though the Republicans felt this was “legal overreach,” notes the AP. Without this Obama-era directive, states will now be the ones to decide whether or not to grant these protections to transgender students.

This isn’t the first time Apple (AAPL) has spoken out against President Trump. Shortly after he was elected, CEO Tim Cook sent a memo to employees, asking them to “move forward and move forward together”. And later, after Trump’s controversial executive order that bans immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries, Cook spoke out again. While talking to students at the University of Glasgow in Scotland, he repeated his criticism for the order.