Silent gathering to protest possible trans athlete ban in Hempfield school sports

Lancaster
trans youth sports bill

LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) — A silent gathering will be held Monday to support trans youth ahead of a July Hempfield School Board Meeting that could ban trans athletes from participating.

As it stands, trans student-athletes can participate in Hempfield sports on the team that best matches their gender identity, falling in line with a PIAA policy that leaves the decision-making at the school level.

According to a press release, the school board is expected to consider possible changes to that district policy which could ban trans athletes from participating.

The gathering will be held Tuesday at 5 p.m. at 200 Stanley Ave in Landisville.

“Transgender students are still protected by Title IX, which ensures that they have the right to equal access to educational opportunities, including access to single-sex spaces and activities consistent with their gender identity,” said K. Foley, on behalf of Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition.

In April, a number of Republican State House members introduced the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act. which would essentially ban transgender youth from playing school sports according to their gender identity.

Supporters of the bill say transgender children who were raised as boys have a physical advantage, but others say it’s anything but fair.

“I say this with respect for all athletes at all levels of play: Sports are important AND the lives of our most vulnerable students are more important,” said Hempfield parent Jamie Beth Cohen. “Make no mistake, this is a life and death matter. And I can’t sit back and watch as trans athletes are excluded from the life-giving and life-affirming benefits of playing sports with their peers.”

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