Texas lawmaker plans to introduce ‘Save Women’s Sports’ Act
The 'Save Women’s Sports Act' would regulate that collegiate athletes must compete according to their biological sex, building on a current Texas law that tightens the eligibility standards for high school athletes.
The bill’s introduction comes on the heels of a months-long debate regarding the Biden administration’s plan to revise Title IX to include gender identity.
Texas State Representative Valoree Swanson is gearing up to make women’s sports a legislative priority during the upcoming session.
The “Save Women’s Sports Act” would regulate that collegiate athletes must compete according to their biological sex, building on a current Texas law that tightens the eligibility standards for high school athletes.
"Over 50 years ago, Congress authorized Title IX, which gave young women unprecedented opportunities, previously denied to them, to compete athletically for scholarships, awards, and records," Swanson said in a press release. "Last session, Texas reaffirmed our commitment to protecting girls' opportunities in public schools. The exceptional young women competing at the college level should have that same protection."
[RELATED: International sports associations suddenly announce new transgender athlete policies]
The bill’s introduction comes on the heels of a months-long debate regarding the Biden administration’s plan to revise Title IX to include gender identity. The Title IX proposal cleared the public comment phase with record input on the proposal.
Campus Reform spoke with a number of activists, athletes, and legal experts on how Biden's revised law would pose a threat to women’s sports. The administration claimed in the revision that it would propose separate legislation regarding transgender athletes, however, no proposal has been made.
Swanson reiterated that the bill represents her commitment to protecting female athletes. She was a primary sponsor of House Bill 25, which went into effect in January after receiving Governor Abbott’s stamp of approval in 2021.
"Passing the Save Women's Sports Act will be one of my top priorities during this session," Swanson said. "I will never back down from standing up to protect girls and women in our schools. I intend to fight for this legislation, and work with everyone who wants to protect our female college athletes!"
[RELATED: Female athletes are victimized by trans athletes, lawsuit argues]
During the 2021-2022 academic year, University of Pennsylvania transgender swimmer Lia Thomas sparked a national overhaul of policy changes for college athletics to increase competition fairness.
Thomas, who previously competed on the Ivy League’s men’s team, won a national title at the NCAA Women’s Swimming Championship in March. His record-breaking season, however, prompted the NCAA to issue a new ruling on transgender athlete eligibility and declared it a “sport-by-sport” basis.
USA Swimming, which governs competitive swimming in the United States, updated its policy to decrease the amount of testosterone an athlete could have prior to competing.
Lawmakers can begin filing legislation on Nov. 14, and the Texas House of Representatives will reconvene on Jan. 10.
Campus Reform contacted Swanson for comment. This article will be updated accordingly.
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