“Because of the participation of transsexuals.” American players are knocking on the door of the judiciary

16 female athletes have filed a lawsuit against the National Collegiate Athletic Association, over its policy regarding the participation of transgender women in its competitions, which they claim violates their rights, under Title IX of the US federal law, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any institution that receives federal funding.

The lawsuit, filed by 12 female athletes, comes in response to a ruling issued in January 2022 by the National Collegiate Athletic Association Board of Governors, according to which transgender female athletes were allowed to compete in competitions for their new gender.

The association considered, at the time, that this step “preserves the opportunity for transgender student athletes while achieving a balance between justice, inclusion, and safety for all who compete.”

In the middle of the week, 16 female athletes in sports such as swimming, football, and track and field, filed the lawsuit, saying that they are “filing this case to ensure that their rights and the rights of generations of women in the future are not violated,” according to what was reported by the “Network.”ABC News“.

“A lot of people ask us, ‘Why did we wait so long to file a lawsuit?'” Kaitlyn Wheeler, a former University of Kentucky swimmer, told ABC. “Well, we waited so long to have the opportunity for the NCAA to make the right decision.”

“The NCAA’s primary mission is to protect the integrity and safety of athletes, and it has failed in that simple mission,” Wheeler said.

The complaint highlights the incident of trans swimmer Leah Thomas participating, and her victory in the National Swimming Association Championship in 2022, weeks after the decision issued by the Association, which allowed her to participate.

Thomas, who specializes in freestyle swimming, competed with the men’s team at the University of Pennsylvania from 2017 to 2019, before participating in the women’s competition in 2022, after a gender transition operation and undergoing the required hormone treatment.

Thus, Thomas became the first known trans athlete to win an elite title in the United States, where she was able to beat the Olympic silver medalist, Emma Wyant, in the 500-meter freestyle race.

The lawsuit alleges that “the secret to Thomas’ meteoric rise and brilliance in women’s swimming in the NCAA is that she retains male-specific physical characteristics,” in which female athletes point out that “biological men do not have athletic advantages that remain inherent even after gender transition.”

“What female athletes are really after is an equal and fair opportunity to succeed. And for everyone to be equal at the starting line,” William Bock, the lead attorney in the lawsuit, told ABC News.

The NCAA said in a statement that although it “does not comment on pending litigation, it and its members will continue to promote Title IX, make unprecedented investments in women’s sports and ensure fair competition in all of its tournaments.”

Thomas did not immediately respond to the network’s requests for comment on the lawsuit.

Thomas has always denied that she “crossed over” into women’s sports in order to achieve better results in women’s competition.

“The biggest misconception is why I crossed, people will say: Oh, you just crossed so you could have an advantage, so you could win,” she said in 2022. “I crossed to be happy, to be true to myself.”

“I knew there would be scrutiny against me if I competed as a woman,” Thomas said. “I was prepared for that. But I also don’t need anyone’s permission to play the sport I love.”

For her part, Anna Beth, research director at the non-profit athlete advocacy group, said in a statement that the organization “strongly” believes that the latest research conducted by advocacy groups and “guidelines at the highest level of sports confirm that trans athletes have no advantage.” “Additionally, they should not only be accepted to participate, but celebrated in NCAA competition.”

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