Justice has finally been granted to three female student-athletes in the state of Connecticut. The girls have fought long and hard against a decision made by the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference or CIAC to allow transgender students to participate as the gender they wish to identify as.
And the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights just ruled that the decision is in violation of female civil rights.
Last year when the CIAC began permitting transgender athletes to compete as whatever gender they chose, it became painfully apparent that biological female students were being put at an extreme disadvantage.
Young men identifying as females were suddenly allowed to compete against biological females, outperforming them in nearly every event, due to their physical advantages.
Young women and girls everywhere were essentially kicked out of their own sporting events and relegated to the sidelines as spectators.
And so three of these young women, in partnership with a nonprofit advocacy group known as Alliance Defending Freedom, filed a lawsuit against the CIAC, demanding an investigation into the legality of the decision.
Selina Soule, Chelsea Mitchell, and Alanna Smith, who all compete in track and field events for their high schools, have been forced to compete against male students, losing credibility, respect, and the attention from college scouts as the trained athletes they are.
Instead, those benefits have gone to two male athletes in particular. Alliance Defending Freedom has watched these two students since 2017, noting that they have given 15 women’s state championship titles during that short time in the state. It is noted that in the year prior, those titled were divided among no less than nine female students.
The CIAC has claimed that their initial decision was made to support Connecticut General Statute § 46a-64(a), which states that it is illegal to “discriminate, segregate or separate on account of… gender identity or expression.”
However, after a thorough investigation and the case being brought before Attorney General William Barr, the US Department of Education has sent a 45-page letter stating that the policy is in violation of Title IX of Education Amendments of 1972, which is a federal law. Title IX, according to the Associated Press, basically ensures that women are given equal education opportunities by federal civil rights law.
Barr began to argue in March that the policy “deprives those women of the single-sex athletic competitions that are one of the marquee accomplishments of Title IX.”
And apparently, the Department of Education agrees.
According to the Department of Education’s letter, the policy has “denied female student-athletes athletic benefits and opportunities, including advancing to the finals in events, higher-level competitions, awards, medals, recognition, and the possibility of greater visibility to colleges and other benefits.”
The letter also noted that female athletes were put in a direct disadvantage to these competing male athletes who are now participating in exclusively female sporting events. And if the roles were reversed, females would still be at a disadvantage.
“the athletic events in which female student-athletes competed were coeducational; female student-athletes were denied the opportunity to compete in events that were exclusively female, whereas male student-athletes were able to compete in events that were exclusively male.”
In addition to making the laws known, the letter also issues a warning to the CIAC and all school districts involved. Should they fail to follow the Department of Education’s ruling, “administrative proceedings to suspend, terminate or refuse to grant or continue and defer financial assistance” may be implemented. Cases may also be referred to the Department of Justice in the future.
As the girls’ legal counsel, Christiana Holcomb told the Daily Caller, “Girls shouldn’t be reduced to spectators in their own sports. We’re encouraged that the Department of Education has officially clarified that allowing males to compete in the female category isn’t fair, destroys girls’ athletic opportunities, and clearly violated federal law.”
One of the girls, track athlete Chelsea Mitchell, says that it “feels like we are finally headed in the right direction and that we will be able to get justice for the countless girls along with myself that have faced discrimination for years.” She states that it is “liberating to know that my voice, my story, my loss, has been heard.”