Female swimming category must be protected for ‘fairness’, pressure group says after vote for effective ban on transgender competitors | World News

A transgender pressure group has said the women’s category in swimming must be defended for “fairness”, following a vote that effectively banned transgender athletes from competing in competitions. Women’s elite race.

FINA, the world governing body for swimming, has said it will explore setting an “open” category against transgender people in some events as part of the new policy, which also requires competitors to complete gender transition before the age of 12 in order to participate in the women’s races.

Transgender Trends, a group that explores transgender and alleged anti-transgender topics, has said it supports the idea of ​​an open category for “fairness” in sport.

Founder and director of the organization, Stephanie Davies-Arai told Sky News: “There are categories for a purpose and male/female is a category that really matters.

“Transgender people can participate in sport but that cannot depend on women and women’s fairness and sport.”

Ms Davies-Arai added that she thinks the open catalog will “make things fair” and that “it meets both requirements to be included”.

Transgender rights have become a hotly debated topic in sports, including cycling and swimming, with both sports seeking to balance inclusion while ensuring there is no unfair advantage.

However, the FINA vote was controversial among LGBTQ sports groups including Ally Athletes, who said that the eligibility criteria were “discriminatory” and must include “all female”.

Transgender inclusion advocates argue that there isn’t enough research on the effects of transitions on physical performance and that elite athletes are often the physical outliers in every arena. fit.

The vote has also divided opinion in the swimming world, with athletes including former British Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies, who has expressed why she thinks women transition gender is not allowed to compete in women’s sports, support it.

The issue of transgender sport is hugely divisive, especially in the US, where it has become a weapon in the so-called “culture war” between conservatives and progressives.

Transgender rights have been the subject of debate around the sports world, but in swimming, it became even more acrimonious after American swimmer Lia Thomas became the NCAA World Champion. first transgender person in Division I history after winning the women’s 500-yard freestyle earlier this year.

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