Gay rights may have gotten an unexpected boost last week – and from an extremely unlikely place: a girl-banning fraternity.
Though federal laws protect gendered brother and sisterhoods, a New York appeals court ruled that City University of New York’s College of Staten Island can refuse a frat that bans women. The court ruled that school administrators have a “substantial interest in making sure that its resources are available to all its students.” The judge goes on, “The state’s interest in prohibiting sex discrimination is no less compelling because federal anti-discrimination statutes exempt fraternities.”
As Inside Higher Ed’s Scott Jaschik points out, this decision could set a precedent in any number of discrimination suits, including gay rights. Thus, a school which used religious leaning to justify anti-gay policy could feasibly be ordered to open their doors.
And not even the back ones.