Three Connecticut high school female athletes have filed a lawsuit against the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC). The CIAC policy allows biological males who claim to be girls (“transgender girls”) to compete in female sports. These three girls have together lost numerous state titles and chances to compete competitively due to biological males competing in their events.
This lawsuit is the first in the nation by female athletes who have had opportunities stripped from them due to transgender athletes competing against them. It alleges that the CIAC policy violates Title IX, a provision in the federal law which requires equal treatment for boys and girls in education.
The three girls who have taken a stand against the CIAC are Selina Soule, Alanna Smith and Chelsea Mitchell. They have all lost honors and opportunities to compete at elite levels of their events.
In 2019, at the Indoor Track and Field State Championships, Soule competed in the 55-meter dash. She finished “one place away from qualifying for finals and two places away from qualifying for the New England Regional Championships.” Between her and those two opportunities were two biological males who both finished ahead of her, placing first and second. Due to this, Soule missed the opportunity to compete at the Regional Championships where college scouts would have been present.
Smith won the 400-meter dash as a freshman at the New England Regional Championships in 2019. However, in the 200-meter dash a biological male competed and won, leaving her in third place instead of second.
Mitchell has lost an astounding four state titles due to biological males competing in her races. In an interview with The Daily Signal, Mitchell said, “It was definitely frustrating and disheartening to be right there, running for the biggest honors in the state, and to work so hard and try so hard to be the best in the state.”
According to the lawsuit, two biological males who have competed in female track events, Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood, have combined to take 15 women’s state championship titles and 85 opportunities to participate in higher levels away from female athletes during the 2017-2019 track seasons.
This lawsuit is the next step in pushing back against the CIAC policy. Previously, Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the legal organization representing the three girls, filed a complaint against the CIAC with the U.S. Department of Education (DOE). As a result, the DOE announced an investigation into the policy which is still ongoing.
ADF issued a press release announcing the lawsuit. “Girls deserve the same opportunity as boys to excel and chase their dreams. Allowing boys to compete in girls’ sports shatters those dreams and steals opportunities. Boys have physical advantages over girls. It’s dispiriting to girls competing against boys to know what the outcome likely is before the race even starts,” said ADF Senior Vice President Kristen Waggoner.
The phenomenon of biological males competing in female sports is quite recent. Now the federal courts will have a say in whether the policy violates Title IX. We’ll keep you updated on any further developments in this case.
The case is Soule v. Connecticut Association of Schools and was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut.
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Photo and Video from Alliance Defending Freedom