MN Family Council says it will offer ‘compromise’ transgender athletics policy


The Minnesota Family Council, a group that opposes LGBT rights, told a religious right media outlet that it will propose a comprise-policy at the Minnesota State High School League on Thursday. The MSHSL is currently mulling a policy that would provide a framework for schools to make extracurricular activities inclusive of transgender students.

The Minnesota Family Council opposes the policy, according to One News Now, a media outlet run by the American Family Association, an organization that is labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Family Council spokesperson Autumn Leva told One News Now that the policy “would basically allow students to select the team they want to play on based on whatever gender they feel they identify with. And of course this will almost certainly lead to being able to access the private facilities like locker rooms, showers and bathrooms of the opposite sex as well.”

According to the website, “Minnesota Family Council will be there Thursday with a compromise proposal.”

“Basically our policy would define what a student’s sex is for the purpose of high school athletics,” Leva said. “And we say that a student’s sex is the sex they’re born with, and they play on the team that matches the sex they’re born with.”

That policy, should the MSHSL adopt it, would be more restrictive than current environment with no policy. Schools currently have discretion on which teams transgender students can play. For example, Hopkins High School in the suburbs west of Minneapolis made accommodations for a transgender student to participate on the track team. Jae Bates, who graduated this spring, is a transgender man who competed on the track team. Bates recently told The Column contributor Claire-Renee Kohner:

“Hopkins was very accommodating and most accommodations were made by the coaches directly rather than the district. I actually never had a problem that wasn’t immediately addressed that would require going to the district level. My coaches changed my name on all of their rosters and allowed me to compete the way I wanted and encouraged me to keep an open line of communication about if that were to ever change. I was allowed access to gender neutral bathrooms to change if I desired them and they kept the team a very friendly and supportive place.”

The compromise that Leva says her group will offer would have forced Hopkins to only allow Bates, a transgender man, to play on the women’s team.

The MSHSL says the policy it plans to pass on Thursday provides a framework for schools about eligibility for transgender students.

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