Bill limiting college sports teams trans athletes goes to Gov. Greg Abbott

Sign up for The Short, The Texas Tribune’s every day newsletter that keeps readers up to speed on the most crucial Texas news.

A bill that would prohibit transgender athletes from competing on college teams that match their gender identity is heading to Gov. Greg Abbott for approval.

The Senate on Friday authorized minor modifications the Home produced to Senate Bill 15 prior to sending it to the governor, who has currently stated he would help such legislation.

On the Senate floor, Sen. Jose Menendez, D-San Antonio, and Sen. Mayes Middleton, R-Galveston, clarified that the legislation only applies to intercollegiate sports in between schools, not intramural sports that are a lot more casual and frequently co-ed games. The vote was 19-12.

All through the legislative session, LGBTQ advocates have railed against the bill.

“S.B. 15 is but an additional invasive, impractical measure mandated by the Texas legislature to ‘fix’ a trouble that does not exist,” stated Melodía Gutiérrez, Texas director for the Human Rights Campaign in a press release earlier this month. “Every student deserves the very same probabilities to engage in sportsmanship, self-discipline, and teamwork, and to construct a sense of belonging with their peers. We need to not discriminate against or ban any student from playing since they’re transgender.”

Senate Bill 15 demands athletes to join the college sports teams that align with their sex assigned at birth, regardless of their gender identity. It delivers whistleblower protections for persons who report violations at a university athletics plan and enables persons to file civil lawsuits against a college or university if they think the institution has violated the law.

Beneath the bill, females would be permitted to join a men’s sports group if the college does not have a women’s group for the very same sport.

The bill is a single of a number of that the Legislature is thinking about this session that could bring significant modifications to the lives of gay and transgender Texans. But it is unclear what effect this bill would have straight away in Texas’ public universities. According to an Austin American-Statesman survey of Texas public universities, the vast majority of Texas schools responded that, to their expertise, they had not had a transgender athlete compete for their university.

For a lot more than a decade, the NCAA has permitted transgender females to participate in women’s sports if they had at least a single year of testosterone suppression medication to treat gender dysphoria. But final year, the conference’s board of governors adopted a new policy that determined trans athletes’ qualifications for participation on a sport-by-sport basis. LGBTQ advocates decried the transform as the conference bowing to political stress from these who disapproved of the organization’s selection to let Lia Thomas, a trans lady, to compete on the women’s swimming group at the University of Pennsylvania.

The new NCAA policy is nevertheless getting phased in. As of now, trans athletes who want to participate in college sports need to meet prior policy needs set in 2010 and report their testosterone levels at the start off of the season and six months into competitors.

Legal professionals say the Texas legislation could open up universities to Title IX lawsuits. In 2021, the Biden administration stated that law, which was produced a lot more than 50 years ago to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex, applies to LGBTQ students. Final month, the administration proposed an amendment to Title IX that would prohibit blanket bans barring transgender students from participating on sports teams constant with their gender identity.

The proposal faced mixed testimonials from LGBTQ advocacy groups that say it would nevertheless let for discrimination against trans students, though critics say it would threaten women’s sports.

“[T]he Department’s proposed regulation would try to coerce compliance with an uncertain, fluid, and absolutely subjective typical that is primarily based on a very politicized gender ideology,” 25 Republican governors, such as Abbott, wrote in a joint comment. “Most troubling, the proposed regulation would turn the goal of Title IX on its head and threaten the numerous achievements of females in athletics.”

Final month, the U.S. Home of Representatives authorized a bill that would amend Title IX to call for student athletes to participate on sports teams primarily based on their sex assigned at birth. The legislation is unlikely to pass in the U.S. Senate, exactly where Democrats have narrow manage.

Disclosure: Human Rights Campaign has been a monetary supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in element by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Economic supporters play no part in the Tribune’s journalism. Come across a total list of them right here.

Stories like the a single you just study come to life at The Texas Tribune Festival, the Tribune’s annual celebration of significant, bold suggestions taking place Sept. 21-23 in downtown Austin. For just a tiny bit longer you can grab a discounted ticket to this year’s occasion, but act speedy — savings finish on Might 31! Invest in now and save.

Previous post Attacks on trans athletes have little basis in science