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Bill barring transgender athletes from women’s sports sent to governor’s desk

Mississippi Legislature Capitol
Photo by News Mississippi

The ‘Mississippi Fairness Act’ is headed to the governor’s desk. 

After passing the Senate earlier in the session, the bill aimed at banning transgender athletes from competing in women’s sports at all public schools and universities in the state cleared the House Wednesday by an 81-28 margin.

Upon introduction of the bill, author Senator Angela Hill explained her belief that the allowance of transgender participation in women’s sports takes opportunities away from biological women.

“I still know what a woman is, that’s why I filed this bill because I know there are inherent biological differences between males and females and that females are at a distinct physiological disadvantage from a male. The most elite female athletes are overshadowed by average male athletes and that’s just typically how it goes,” Hill said in early February.

This is not the first time that Hill has attempted to pass the bill (SB 2536) as it failed to reach the floor in the past few years. She authored the bill after seeing a Connecticut policy allow biological males to compete in women’s sports, leading to a diminished level of competition. According to the American Family Association, which supported the bill, two transgender athletes won 15 women’s state championship titles and set 17 new individual meet records between 2017-2019.

Hill also referenced the bill’s contrast to a Biden Administration executive order that aims to allow transgender athletes to participate in women’s sports. 

“What Biden’s administrative order is trying to do is say, women, you may matter in everything here and there, but you don’t matter and sports. I’m here to support all women that want to play sports,” she said at the time.

Polling data from the Mississippi Center for Public Policy revealed that 79 percent support the intent of the bill—87 percent of Republicans support the legislation, along with 83 percent of Independents and 65 percent of Democrats.

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