Transgender teen not allowed to join Iowa American Legion program
© Thinkstock/Istock

A transgender boy from Iowa will not be allowed to take part in the American Legion's summer high school leadership program Boys State, in a move the organization says is in keeping with its acceptance policies.

Emmett Cummings, a high school junior who has been transitioning to become a male for three years, was initially nominated last fall to attend the program by his local chapter of the veterans association. 

But the state chapter told ABC affiliate KCRG-TV9 that it would keep with its policy of not allowing transgender boys to join after a decision by its board of directors. 


Cummings, who has wanted to attend the citizenship and mock-legislative program since he first heard of it, says he has a passion for government. 

The teen told KCRG that while the local American Legion post "has done everything they can," he hopes the state chapter will change its policies "so no transgender individual has to go through the same humiliation I went through."

The transgender rights issue has been in the spotlight throughout President TrumpDonald TrumpEx-Trump lawyer Cohen to pen forward for impeachment book Murkowski says it would be 'appropriate' to bar Trump from holding office again Man known as 'QAnon Shaman' asks Trump for pardon after storming Capitol MORE's tenure, as federal courts scrambled to block Trump's attempt to ban transgender individuals from serving in the armed forces.

Trump's move aimed to walk back former President Obama's overturning of a previous rule that prevented such individuals from serving openly in the military.