College Transgender Student Denied Housing

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Kourt Osborn thought that living on campus would be easiest while going to school at Southern Utah University, but it turns out he was wrong. "Really wrong," 22-year-old Osborn said.

The transgender student applied for housing at the public university in Cedar City and was up front with the housing department regarding his gender orientation by writing a long essay and explaining some issues transgender people face. Osborn knew there was a problem when he received a letter from the housing officials. Osborn met with Neuman Duncan, the director of university housing, for over an hour.

"During our conversation he told me that a sociology professor on campus believed I was ‘not truly a transsexual’ because I do not seek sexual reassignment surgery." Osborn was told he would need to provide a letter from the doctor monitoring his hormone treatment; a letter from his therapist stating he has gender identity disorder; and documentation that he has had sexual reassignment surgery before he’s allowed to live in the male residence halls. In the meantime, Osborn has also been denied housing in the female halls as well.

"I can find other places to live, but I believe this has gone far beyond just me. What about other trans-people that might want to live there?"


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