A transgender teen and her family are seeking out justice after she was attacked in school for her gender identity.
13-year-old Lindsey Smith was punched in the face by a male classmate, leaving her with bruising on her face and a bloody nose.
The boy had also called her transphobic names .
The assault took place in Smith’s school, McLoughlin Middle School in Vancouver.
“He punched me in the face, right here and right here,” Smith said. “My nose was bleeding. I was holding my nose. The principal told me to ignore it and try not to let it ruin my day.”
Smith’s aunt, Leslie Goodnight, was so outraged by the attack that she took to Facebook.
Goodnight wrote: “My 13 year old niece is mtf transgender. She is the victim of hate crimes every day in her middle school.
“My sister has gone to the principal on numerous occasions with complaints of not only students seeking out and harassing my niece, but the teachers as well! They will call her by her birth name and call her a boy in front of the entire class!
Goodnight went on to detail the attack that prompted her to write the post.
“A male student walked down the halls of the school and was yelling my nieces name and saying “she is a boy” and “she has a D*** ” and “she has to go to the Dr’s to tell them she’s a girl” and the male student walked up to her and punched her in the face 2 to 3 times!
“The school did not call the police nor did they suspend the male student because “the cameras couldn’t clearly see what happened” and 3 students claimed that my niece pushed the male student first.
Goodnight finished off the post noting that her niece’s nose may be broken.
The post has since gone viral and drawn even more attention to the daily violence that trans people face, especially the unprecedented discrimination that school children are facing.
Since posting on Facebook, the administration at the middle school has put the male student on emergency expulsion and an officer has written a report and is turning the case over to the DA, prompting Goodnight to ask people to stop campaigning for justice on behalf of Smith.
“It’s really heartbreaking because I want her only worries to be, does this lip stick go with my outfit? Like any other girl,” Goodnight told KPTV. “I don’t want it to be, well, is today the day I get beat up, or is the teacher going to put me down and make me humiliated?”
Carrie Smith, Lindsey’s mother, told KPTV she was devastated when she heard the news.
“My heart started beating and I started crying. She had texted me, ‘mom, a kid punched me in the face. I think my nose is broken and it’s bleeding really bad’,” she said.
“I’m always in contact with the school, but it doesn’t seem they’re taking it as seriously as they should,” she said. “I just don’t want her to suffer anymore bullying.”
Trans protection laws in Washington require schools to use their chosen names and pronouns to help prevent harassment.
Travis Both, principal at Smith’s school said the school was “deeply concerned by this behaviour” and wanted to “assure students and families that bullying or any other form of harassment will not be tolerated.”