Tallahassee’s NBC News affiliate reports that Republicans in the Florida House passed a bill on Wednesday that bans transgender girls and women from competing on women’s high school and college sports teams.
The bill would make participation in athletics contingent on determining a students’ “biological sex,” which is a disputed term that refers to the sex assigned at birth.
Law&Crime noted specifically that the bill allows for genital inspections for athletes whose gender is disputed.
The GOP-led Florida House of Representatives on Wednesday voted 70-44 along party lines to pass HB 1475, which would ban transgender female athletes from competing on women’s athletic teams in both high school and college while subjecting some students-athletes to “genital inspections” before they can play.
Also called the “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” the measure effectively states that student-athletes who were biological males at the time of their birth cannot compete on women’s athletic teams. Student-athletes born biological females may still compete on male or female teams.
According to the legislation, disputes regarding a student’s sex under the law would be resolved with a “health examination and consent form” verifying the student’s biological sex.
“The health care provider may verify the student’s biological sex as part of a routine sports physical examination by relying only on one or more of the following: 1. The student’s reproductive anatomy; 2. The student’s genetic makeup; or 3. The student’s normal endogenously produced testosterone levels,” the text of the five-page bill reads.
Florida House Republicans have maintained that the bill is based on science.
“Boys and men are faster and stronger than women. That’s just genetics and that’s just science,” said Republican state Rep. Chris Latvala. “We’re not targeting the LGBT community and we’re not targeting the trans community. We’re just, in my mind, we’re protecting women’s access to sports.”
Law&Crime reported that “the state Senate version of the bill must get through one more committee stop before the chamber puts it to a vote.”
Image: Florida state Rep. Chris Latvala (R). (Screengrab / FLInternetTV / YouTube)