World Swimming Org Bans Trans Women Athletes That Are Past Puberty Age

World Swimming Org Bans Trans Women Athletes That Are Past Puberty Age thumbnail

Lia Thomas Scandal
FINA Bans Trans Women Athletes …
Who are Past Puberty Age

6/19/2022 3: 46 PM PT

Lia Thomas‘ participation in women’s swimming has reached a breaking point — because the world’s governing body for the sport has weighed in … and their ruling is against her.

FINA — French acronym for the International Swimming Federation — made their decision about transgender athletes, specifically trans women, participating in women’s swim. They say it’s a no go going forward with some caveats.

FINA announces new policy on gender inclusion https://t.co/tOcoTKz8WK

— FINA (@fina1908) June 19, 2022
@fina1908

The org’s new policy says male-to-female swimmers who transition before age of 12 or before the Tanner Stage 2 of puberty — whichever comes later — can compete in women’s events. They say that trans female athletes who have already experienced male puberty have an unfair advantage over cisgender women.

They reached this conclusion based on multiple studies, reports and presentations by 3 specialist groups, who offered their findings to FINA — made up of members from 152 national federations — which then voted … with a 71% majority in favor of this decision.

World swimming’s governing body has effectively banned transgender women from competing in women’s events.

FINA members voted 71.5% in favor of a policy that only permits swimmers who transitioned before age 12 to compete in women’s events. https://t.co/2fZ93vZb08

— The Associated Press (@AP) June 19, 2022
@AP

In the wake of this coming down, a rep for the Prez of FINA told AP, “This is not saying that people are encouraged to transition by the age of 12. Scientists believe that transitioning after puberty gives you an unfair advantage. “

The spox adds, “They’re not saying everyone should transition by age 11, that’s ridiculous. Most countries don’t allow you to transition before that age, and hopefully you won’t be encouraged. They are basically saying that people who have successfully transitioned cannot compete without an advantage. They clarified that there are no trans women competing in elite swimming levels… possibly meaning international competition.

FINA is considering an “open competition” category to be inclusive for trans swimmers. They are currently working with a team to explore the issue further.

It’s not clear if FINA’s new rules will be adopted by agencies such as the NCAA. This agency currently allows people like Lia to participate in collegiate swimming. She made history this year by winning a national title in women’s swimming, the 500-meter freestyle.

It worked! It worked! You shouldn’t be allowed to take the medals away from women if you go through male puberty. Period. https://t.co/qqZq7gnt6g

— Caitlyn Jenner (@Caitlyn_Jenner) June 19, 2022
@Caitlyn_Jenner

In any case, some people are welcoming the news … including Caitlyn Jenner, who’s been advocating for such change for a while now — saying trans female athletes have an undeniable physical advantage over their cisgender competition, as have many others.

She wrote, “It worked! It was a lot of heat, but it was fair. You shouldn’t be allowed to take the medals away from women if you go through male puberty. Period. “

Lia doesn’t seem to have made any comments publicly yet.

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