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Pennsylvania Governor Vetoes Transgender Sports Ban

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bill, which sailed through the Republican-led legislature on largely party-line votes, would have required public K-12 schools and colleges to designate sports as male, female, or coed.

For female-designated sports, athletes would only be allowed to participate if they were assigned female at birth.The bill is silent on male-designated sports, presumably allowing transgender males and cisgender females to participate on boys’ teams, such as football team, in cases where there is not a team specifically designated for girls.

Heretofore, such allowances were considered in compliance with Title IX, the federal law prohibiting sex-based discrimination in educational settings.The bill would have prohibited any governmental agency or athletic association from taking adverse actions against schools enforcing sex-specific restrictions, and would have allowed students who believe they’ve been deprived of athletic opportunities due to competing against transgender athletes to sue schools and school districts for damages.

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