The Transgender Athlete Banning Bill


A bill was passed by the Kansas Senate that would prohibit transgender women to compete in girl’s and women’s sports from elementary school level all the way through university level

This bill, which passed on March 16, was introduced by the conservative Republicans who claimed that the measure was necessary so that all sports would be fair and no one would have any advantages against the other athletes

“I just want to ensure that women have the same opportunity that I had as a college athlete, to have a fair and equitable playing field,” said state Sen. Renee Erickson of Wichita said at the Senate Education Committee hearing.

This bill has caused a lot of controversy and outrage by LGBTQ+ advocates who have been fighting for equality. Thomas Witt, the director of Equality Kansas said on CJonline that this bill will affect the mental health of the transgender youth and would increase bullying.

Apart from the physical advantages a transgender athlete might have, Erickson was worried that transgender athletes would take away scholarships and opportunities that a biological girl in participating in the sport might get.

When asked about this issue, Emily Locke a member of the THS swim team said, “I think it’s crazy and kind of stupid because I feel like if a transgender girl has a bigger advantage I guess you could just put her against someone that has like the same skill as her so I feel like it wouldn’t be a problem.”

Topeka High swim and cross country coach Ken Bennett, who has had experience with coaching a transgender student athlete, talked about some of the difficulties that he and the student athlete encountered.

“The first challenge encountered was that he wasn’t fully transitioned yet, so therefore the locker room was an issue because he was not only sharing it with the kids that he was going to school with but we also shared it with Hayden and TSA.”

When asked about what the most difficult part of having a transgender student student athlete he said “The hardest part was making them feel safe enough to continue, and that they weren’t getting bullied and they weren’t getting teased.”

Giving all students a chance to participate in sports is important and should not be taken away.

“Being inclusive is an awesome opportunity for everybody to learn about themselves and the world around them,” said track and wrestling coach Tony Canacari.

On April 22, Governor Laura Kelly vetoed the bill.