NCAA Pressured to Ban Trans Women from Women's Sports

NCAA Pressured to Ban Trans Women from Women's Sports

The NCAA has received a number of calls to issue more restrictions on trans students after a smaller athletics association, the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), voted to ban trans women from a majority of its women’s sports programs. In April, the NCAA announced its policy is “under review.” Marshi Smith, the co-founder of the Independent Council on Women’s Sport (ICONS), commended the NAIA’s move as a “crucial measure” and called on the NCAA to “release a policy that protects the women’s category.”

According to CNN, Smith argues that transgender women pose an advantage to cisgender women, even if they underwent treatment for lower testosterone levels. On the other hand, transgender athletes and their advocates contend that this claim lacks consistent and direct research.

“The idea that trans women are taking over women’s sport is a pretty outside statement given the number of trans women who are competing in the NCAA,” said Anna Baeth, director of research at Athlete Ally, an organization that advocates for LGBTQ equality in sports.

Baeth estimates less than 40 of the NCAA’s 500,000 plus athletes identify as transgender. Last month, Athlete Ally sent the NCAA letters signed by over 400 current and former professional and collegiate athletes, as well as hundreds of researchers and advocacy groups, urging the organization to continue permitting transgender athletes to compete.

“To deny transgender athletes the fundamental right to be who they are, to access the sport they love, and to receive the proven mental and physical health benefits of sport goes against the very principles of the NCAA’s Constitution,” read the letter signed by athletes including retired US women’s national soccer team star Megan Rapinoe.

“Every single student should have access to the lifesaving power of sports.”

According to the Movement Advancement Project, at least 25 states have enacted laws and regulations banning transgender women and girls from competing in female sports.

Photo credit: ©GettyImages/Kathryn Riley / Stringer

Photo description: CAMBRIDGE, MA - FEBRUARY 18: University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas looks on after winning the 200 yard freestyle during the 2022 Ivy League Women's Swimming and Diving Championships at Blodgett Pool on February 18, 2022 in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Milton QuintanillaMilton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for CrosswalkHeadlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.