No Girl or Woman Should be Subject to "Sex Verification"
Last month, Idaho’s Governor Brad Little signed a law that bans women and girls who are transgender and intersex from playing school sports. The law also potentially subjects all female athletes in the state to invasive genital and genetic screenings.
Trans girls are girls who should have the same opportunities as any other student to join a sports team. And no girl or woman should be subject to “sex verification.” Ever.
So, April 15th, we filed a lawsuit, along with ACLU, ACLU ID, and the law firm Cooley LLP, challenging the law, HB 500, because it violates Title IX and the Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause and protections against illegal searches.
And by illegal searches, we’re talking about of girls’ and women’s bodies. The Idaho law says girls—and not boys—might have to “prove” their gender before they can play high school soccer or college basketball. Or run with their cross country team. That’s what our plaintiff Lindsay Hecox, a freshman at Boise State University, would like to do but can’t under the new law.
“I run for myself, but part of what I enjoy about the sport is building the relationships with a team,” Lindsay said. “I’m a girl, and the right team for me is the girls’ team.”
In Idaho and around the country, transgender people of all ages have been participating in sports consistent with their gender identity for years. There is no evidence of dominance by transgender athletes at any level of sport.
Even before HB 500 passed, Idaho had one of the most restrictive policies in the country. The new law is now the first in the country to impose an outright ban on participation of transgender athletes and Idaho is now the only state regulating transgender and intersex athletes in the country.
We fought the bill in the legislature with support from our communities. And we’re going to continuing that fight in the courts.
We stand with Lindsay and all girls and women in Idaho who might be banned from sports or forced to undergo invasive physical screenings to play for their school team.