Action Alert: Oppose Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education

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The final Senate confirmation vote for Betsy DeVos, the current nominee for U.S. Secretary of Education, could happen as early as today.

Please contact Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey and urge him to vote NO on Betsy DeVos. (Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey has already committed to voting against the confirmation.)

DeVos is bad for education. If confirmed, DeVos would be the first Secretary of Education that has not attended, taught, or even sent her kids to public school.

DeVos is bad for students, especially LGBTQ students. LGBTQ students face discrimination, hostility and erasure in schools every day and are in need of more protections, not less. According to The Guardian, DeVos and her family have donated to Focus on the Family, a right-wing group that supports so-called “conversion therapy.” Additionally, the DeVos family invested significant amounts of fighting against marriage equality. “The DeVos Urban Leadership Initiative, a family foundation, has donated generously to the far-right legal group Alliance Defending Freedom, which is challenging the Obama administration’s protections for trans students in court,” according to The Guardian.

DeVos is bad for student victims of sexual violence. The future enforcement of Title IX, a federal law designed to eliminate sex discrimination in schools and education programs, is unnervingly unclear under the new administration. When asked about upholding the official Title IX guidance issued by the Office of Civil Rights in 2011, DeVos said it would be “premature” to commit to upholding it.

DeVos is bad for civil rights. The Secretary of Education must enforce civil rights laws. The Department of Education is responsible for implementing and enforcing laws protecting of students from discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex and disability. DeVos’ unclear position regarding compliance with federal civil rights laws such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) make her unfit to serve as U.S. Secretary of Education.

TAKE ACTION ONE STEP AT A TIME:

CONTACT Sen. Pat Toomey and urge him to OPPOSE the confirmation of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education.

It is notoriously difficult for constituents to get in touch with Sen. Pat Toomey. You can call, email, fax, tweet and post to his Facebook page to urge him to vote NO on DeVos for Secretary of Education.

BONUS ACTION:

Sen. Bob Casey has stated he will vote against DeVos.

Please contact Sen. Bob Casey and thank him for standing up for students in Pennsylvania by calling him, emailing him, tweeting him or posting to his Facebook page.

Thank you for speaking out in support of equality.

The Women’s Law Project is the only public interest law center in Pennsylvania devoted to advancing the rights of women and girls.

Sign up for WLP’s Action Alerts here. Stay up to date on issues and policy by subscribing to our blog, following us on twitter and liking us on Facebook

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About womenslawproject

The Women's Law Project creates a more just and equitable society by advancing the rights and status of all women throughout their lives. To this end, we engage in high-impact litigation, advocacy, and education.
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