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NCAA issues statement on transgender athletes, future tournaments

NCAA
NCAA(KWCH)
Published: Apr. 12, 2021 at 3:47 PM CDT
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(KWCH) - The NCAA Board of Governors issued a statement on Monday regarding its support of transgender athletes and future tournaments.

The board said it “firmly and unequivocally supports the opportunity for transgender student-athletes to compete in college sports” and is “grounded in our values of inclusion and fair competition.”

The NCAA said its policy “requires testosterone suppression treatment for transgender women to compete in women’s sports” and “embraces the evolving science on this issue and is anchored in participation policies of both the International Olympic Committee and the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee.”

The statement comes as a number of states, including Kansas, have passed bills forcing transgender athletes to play on teams associated with their gender assignment at birth rather than what they identify with. The Kansas legislature, on Friday, passed the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act banning transgender athletes from playing on women’s teams from kindergarten to college. Supporters of the Kansas bill said it protects girls and women in sports. Opponents said it could have a negative impact on children and possibly the economy, in particular future NCAA tournaments in the state.

The NCAA said when it comes to tournaments, its policy ”directs that only locations where hosts can commit to providing an environment that is safe, healthy and free of discrimination should be selected.”

Read the full release from the NCAA below.

The NCAA Board of Governors firmly and unequivocally supports the opportunity for transgender student-athletes to compete in college sports. This commitment is grounded in our values of inclusion and fair competition.

The NCAA has a long-standing policy that provides a more inclusive path for transgender participation in college sports. Our approach — which requires testosterone suppression treatment for transgender women to compete in women’s sports — embraces the evolving science on this issue and is anchored in participation policies of both the International Olympic Committee and the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee. Inclusion and fairness can coexist for all student-athletes, including transgender athletes, at all levels of sport. Our clear expectation as the Association’s top governing body is that all student-athletes will be treated with dignity and respect. We are committed to ensuring that NCAA championships are open for all who earn the right to compete in them.

When determining where championships are held, NCAA policy directs that only locations where hosts can commit to providing an environment that is safe, healthy and free of discrimination should be selected. We will continue to closely monitor these situations to determine whether NCAA championships can be conducted in ways that are welcoming and respectful of all participants.

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