Schoolgirls Sue to Ban Transgender Athletes from Female High School Sports
Connecticut teens file lawsuit to block born-male transgenders who 'identify' as girls
A group of Connecticut schoolgirls has filed a lawsuit to ban born-male transgenders, who "identify" as girls, from competing in female high school sports events.
Three teenage female high school runners filed the federal lawsuit seeking to limit participation in girls’ sports to biological females only.
The suit was filed Wednesday by the conservative nonprofit group Alliance Defending Freedom.
The group says it is suing because the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference policy allows “biological boys” to beat them at track events.
The teens argue that having an unfair disadvantage in school sports is depriving them of possible scholarships.
“Girls deserve to compete on a level playing field,” Christiana Holcomb, ADF's attorney, said in a statement.
“Forcing them to compete against boys isn’t fair, shatters their dreams and destroys their athletic opportunities,” Holcomb added.
Holcomb is representing high school track athletes Selina Soule, Chelsea Mitchell, and Alanna Smith, according to the New York Post.
The girls all allege they have suffered since CIAC first implemented its policy in 2017 allowing athletes with male anatomy to compete alongside girls, the Connecticut Post reports.
As a result, two athletes born “biologically male” have “taken 12 women’s state championship titles” previously held by nine different girls, Holcomb said.
“It is not fair for any boy to compete against girls,” Smith, the daughter of former Major League pitcher Lee Smith, said during Wednesday’s press conference.
“That biological unfairness doesn’t go away because of what someone believes about gender identity.”
Smith insists her inclusion in the filing has nothing to with “lifestyle.”
“It’s simply about fairness of play,” she said.
The students are seeking a preliminary injunction to stop the policy.
CIAC officials, meanwhile, said it would respond to the lawsuit after reviewing it, the Connecticut Post reports.
“The CIAC believes that its current policy is appropriate under both state and federal law, and it has been defending that policy in the complaint that was filed previously with the Office of Civil Rights,” the organization said in a statement.
Relatives of the girls and ADF officials also filed a Title IX complaint with the Department of Education in June.
The lawsuit cites two transgender high school athletes — seniors Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood — who have competed directly against Soule, Mitchell, and Smith.
Soule is a senior at Glastonbury High School, Mitchell is a senior at Canton High School and Smith is a sophomore at Danbury High School.
Miller, a senior at Bloomfield High School, and Yearwood, a senior at Cromwell High School, will be represented by the American Civil Liberties Union.
Both have released statements indicating that they have no plans to stop competing.
“I will never stop being me!” Yearwood said.
“I will never stop running! I hope that the next generations of trans youth doesn’t have to fight the fights that I have.”
Connecticut is one of 17 states that allowed transgender high school athletes to compete without restrictions in 2019, while 20 others either had no policies or handled each student on a case-by-case basis, according to Transathlete.com, a website that tracks high school policies for transgender athletes nationwide.