Alabama Becomes the Latest State to Implement Anti-Trans Sports Bill

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed House Bill 391 on Friday, April 23. The bill targets the participation of transgender youth in school sports.

LGBTQ activists regard the bill as staunchly anti-transgender. The bill would ban students from participating in school sports that are consistent with their gender identity. The Alabama bill is not unique. Thirty states have introduced anti-LGBTQ legislation in the most recent session.

There are currently over 250 anti-LGBTQ bills around the country that are under consideration in state legislatures. Over 120 of the bills could specifically effect transgender people. At least 66 of the bills would also prevent transgender girls from joining gender-specific sports teams.

Activists responded on the same day that Gov. Ivey signed House Bill 391. Human Rights Campaign President Alphonso David was among those who responded to the now-signed legislation.

“By signing this legislation, Gov. Ivey is forcefully excluding transgender children,” stated David. “They deserve the same opportunity to learn valuable skills of teamwork, sportsmanship, and healthy competition with their peers.”

The NCAA is among a number of other organizations who oppose limiting the participation of transgender student-athletes in sports. The NCAA Board of Governors voiced its opposition in its letter to the public.

The board stated that it maintains its support of transgender student-athletes playing at the collegiate level. The board added that NCAA policy dictates that locations for championships are determined based on several factors. These factors include whether hosts can ensure a safe environment that remains free of discrimination.

Oklahoma House passed a similar bill earlier the same week. Senate Bill 2 bans transgender girls and women from sports participation consistent with their gender identity. The bill affects sports at the elementary, secondary and post-secondary levels. It also mandates that parents annually file an affidavit. The affidavit confirms a child’s gender identity.