North Carolina

‘Pro-family’ group pushes back against policy for North Carolina transgender athletes

What does LGBTQIA mean?

You have heard of LGBT, but do you really know what the letters stand for? And how about QIA? Melissa Winter, youth advocate with the KC Anti-Violence project, breaks down the terminology for you in 90 seconds.
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You have heard of LGBT, but do you really know what the letters stand for? And how about QIA? Melissa Winter, youth advocate with the KC Anti-Violence project, breaks down the terminology for you in 90 seconds.

A North Carolina group that advocates for “pro-family positions” is pushing back against a participation policy for transgender high school athletes.

In May, the North Carolina High School Athletic Association approved a policy that would allow transgender students to play on sports teams with the gender they identify with, a change from the old policy that based a student’s participation on the gender on their birth certificate, the Citizen Times reported.

The policy is an effort from the NCHSAA to be more inclusive of transgender students, HighSchoolOT.com reported at the time.

The changed was lauded by LGBTQ advocates and proponents of women’s rights, who said allowing transgender girls to compete on girls teams advances fairness and “opportunities for all women to benefit from athletic participation and competition,” according to a statement published by the ACLU of North Carolina.

But the North Carolina Values Coalition, a nonpartisan lobbying group, is unhappy with the new policy and wants it changed.

“Students who claim to be transgender will now be allowed to compete in high school athletics as the gender they identify with, not the sex they were born,” the group says. “Do you want your daughter or granddaughter competing against boys on their girls’ basketball team, softball team, volleyball team, swim team, or track team?”

In order to play on a team with their identified gender, student athletes must fill out an Identity Request Form and provide several supporting documents — including a list of treatments, medications or interventions and medical professional verification — to the NCHSAA Gender Identity Committee, according to the policy.

“The Committee will approve the Request if it finds that the student genuinely identifies as the gender indicated in the Request,” the policy states, according to High School OT.

The NC Values Coalition is urging people to sign its petition or contact the NCHSAA to have it change the policy, citing its concern about “allowing biological males who claim to be transgender” competing as females and “having access to locker rooms and bathroom facilities.”

It’s unclear how many people have signed the petition.

“If you believe it is not fair for the NCHSAA to allow athletes who were born male and went through puberty as males to compete in girls sports and share bathrooms, locker rooms, and showers with girls (and vice versa), would you consider taking a minute to use this click-to-contact tool to ask the NCHSAA to reverse their gender identity policy?” the group says.

Advocates of transgender rights reject concerns about bathrooms and locker rooms.

“Instead, we recognize the harm to all women and girls that will flow from allowing some women and girls to be denied opportunities to participate and cast out of the category of ‘woman’ for failing to meet standards driven by stereotypes and fear,” they said in a statement.

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Bailey Aldridge is a reporter covering real-time news in North and South Carolina. She has a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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