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EIIA Prepares Colleges to Deal with Transgender Issues on Campus

CHICAGO (November 16, 2009)

EIIA (Educational & Institutional Insurance Administrators), a not-for-profit organization that provides extensive insurance and risk management services to member colleges and universities, is addressing on-campus transgender liability issues through its risk management consultation and resources. Initially contacted by member institutions that encountered the issue on their campuses, EIIA researched and produced a first-ever white paper addressing the issue. Titled "Transgender Individuals on Campus," EIIA intends to help higher education institutions understand the legal rights of transgenders. EIIA supports its 130 private member colleges and universities in developing policies and procedures to help them address transgender issues respectfully.

EIIA was founded for the purpose of serving Historically Black Colleges and Universities at a time when prejudice and fragile financial health placed quality insurance out of their reach. As EIIA continues to serve its members with a commitment to equity, EIIA is intimately familiar with the liability associated with not offering reasonable policies and procedures for transgender students and employees.

"With increased medical understanding and wider availability of treatment for gender variations, the social issues surrounding transgender people cannot be ignored," said John Roskopf, EIIA vice president, risk management. "Establishing supportive policies and resources that protect the transgender community is good business for several reasons including maintaining a solid reputation. Institutions will also reduce their litigation risk related to discrimination and harassment and will maintain their ability to attract the best and brightest students and employees, regardless of their gender identity."

Preparation for successfully managing transgender issues includes reviewing institution registration policies, student and employee handbooks, and training for everyone from faculty and staff to dormitory resident assistants. EIIA has identified transgender risk management best practices and offers consultation to its members to ensure they are compliant with the law and respect the rights and privacy of transgenders.

"The diverse landscape of higher education across the country is changing," says Siri Gadbois, CEO of EIIA. "At EIIA, we are dedicated to help our members address these issues with appropriate counsel and innovative risk management solutions so they can better fulfill their mission."

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