THE RAATZ ROUNDUP
Submitted for use on April 22, 2022
Word Count: 432
By State Sen. Jeff Raatz (R-Richmond)
In the past few years, the United States has seen an increased number of biological males competing on female sports teams where they have displayed a sex-based advantage.
A biological male competing as a female for the University of Pennsylvania women's swim team has broken records in multiple events. This individual went from being ranked #462 in the nation when competing as a male to being ranked #1 in the nation when competing as a female.
In 2018, Connecticut's high school state champion and state runner up in the womens' 100-meter dash were both biological males who identify as female.
Current federal anti-discrimination laws have repeatedly recognized that it is reasonable to give males and females separate athletic opportunities in school because of biological differences that give males a competitive edge in many sports, such as running and swimming.
This legislative session, the Indiana General Assembly passed House Enrolled Act 1041, which would have preserved sex-based fairness in K-12 sports. HEA 1041 would have required that only biological females, based on a person's sex at birth, can participate in female sports at an Indiana K-12 school. This includes both public and private schools.
HEA 1041 would also have allowed a student who is harmed by a violation of this law to bring a lawsuit against the school or athletic association that permitted the violation. A school or association cannot retaliate against a student for reporting or filing a lawsuit against a violation, and schools and athletic associations would not be legally liable for complying with this law.
While I was disappointed the governor vetoed the bill in March, I am hopeful the bill may still become law since the House of Representatives has expressed intent to override the veto. If they are successful, the Senate will have an opportunity to do the same. If given the opportunity, I will encourage my fellow senators to join me in voting to override the veto and preserve fairness in female sports. I remain a strong advocate for this legislation and sex-based fairness in K-12 sports.
Biological males have an inherently stronger physique, and this bill assures there are not any unfair advantages. Biological females have the right to participate on an even playing field against their peers, and ensuring this fairness in female sports is a critical part of providing our youth with meaningful experiences and opportunities beyond the walls of the classroom.
If you have any questions or concerns on these or other topics, feel free to contact me at Senator.Raatz@iga.in.gov or 317-233-0930.
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