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University of Oklahoma students protest housing policy

About 60 University of Oklahoma students rallied on the South Oval on Wednesday in support of a housing policy they say would protect gay students from harassment.
by Jane Glenn Cannon Published: March 8, 2012

/articleid/3655478/1/pictures/1661308">Photo - President David L. Boren walks and listens to student protestors in favor of gender neutral housing on the Campus on the South Oval of the University of Oklahoma on Wednesday, March 7, 2012, in Norman, Okla.  Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman
President David L. Boren walks and listens to student protestors in favor of gender neutral housing on the Campus on the South Oval of the University of Oklahoma on Wednesday, March 7, 2012, in Norman, Okla. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman

The students contend the options do not protect gay and transgender students from bullying and harassment.

Gay and transgender students are uncomfortable with existing housing arrangements, the petition states, and often fall victim to derogatory remarks and bullying.

A gender-neutral housing option would protect the students from harassment, the petition states.

A 2005 National School Climate Survey referenced in the petition indicates that 40 percent of the students surveyed reported they felt unsafe at school due to their sexual orientation.

“Gender-neutral housing is a crucial step towards ending harassment of LGBT students on campus,” said Axton Nichols, one of the organizer's of Wednesday's rally.

by Jane Glenn Cannon
Senior Reporter
A native of Oklahoma, Jane Glenn Cannon is an award-winning reporter who has covered everything from crime, courts and government to entertainment and features. She wrote a popular personal column for many years. She is a former associate writer...
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