ATLANTA — Three Atlanta-based universities are upping security for graduation weekend after a Kansas-based church said they plan to protest Sunday.

Spelman College, Morehouse College and Clark Atlanta University are being targeted by Westboro Baptist Church, a Kansas based organization recognized as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

This planned protest comes after Morehouse College decided to let transgender men attend the university beginning next fall, according to a Westboro press release.

Westboro Baptist Church, local group face off in opposing protests in north Georgia

“Morehouse, founded by Baptists, announced in April, 2019, that for 135 years only male students could enroll, but starting in 2020, females, who pretend that they are males, will be welcome. Check the neck! God’s moral law is immutable!” the group wrote.  

The group is also protesting Spelman for a LGBTQ organization known as 'Afrekete' and Clark Atlanta University officials. 

Spelman College officials said they are aware of the planned protest. 

"We will have additional staff on hand to ensure that all events proceed safely and with minimal disruption if any at all," Spelman said in an official release. They went on to ask everyone, "to immediately report any suspicious or concerning behavior to campus staff or law enforcement." 

The commencement ceremonies for all three schools will happen May 19. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms is the commencement speaker for Spelman College. 

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