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Trans Activist Supports FINA’s Decision To Ban Transgender Women From Female Swimming Events

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Last Updated: June 21, 2022, 16:31 IST

Norrie May-Welby (Twitter)

Norrie May-Welby (Twitter)

Norrie May-Welby, a Scottish-Australian transgender person, made headlines when they won a legal battle to be considered neither a man nor a woman in the New South Wales Registry. Norrie supports the decision made by FINA to ban trans women swimmers from competing against female athletes

The world governing body for swimming, FINA, effectively banned transgender women from competing in events involving athletes who were born women. As per the changes, transgender women will compete in an “open category.” A popular transgender activist has come forward in support of the decision taken by the governing body.

Norrie May-Welby, a Scottish-Australian transgender person, made headlines when they won a legal battle to be considered neither a man nor a woman in the New South Wales Registry. Norrie supports the decision made by FINA to ban trans women swimmers from competing against female athletes.

“I accept the right of the organisation running sports to make the rules for their events,” said Norrie, in an interview with Daily Mail Australia. They added that if it is a fact that the people who have been through “standard male puberty” are at an unfair advantage over those who have not, then “keeping a separate category for those who have not been through male puberty seems fair.”

FINA Restricts Transgender Participation in Elite Women's Competitions, Creates 'Open' Category For Them

In April, Norrie was quoted by Daily Mail Australia, saying, “If you say you do not want to be on a team or play in a match against a transgender because they are trans, then that’s bigotry. However, they later clarified that her comments were directed toward community sports. Adding to their statements supporting FINA’s decision, they said, “This is however only about elite-level competition sports, not community participation in sports.

The issue honed the spotlight when in March, Lia Thomas, a trans woman, competed in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) 500-yard freestyle swimming championship and won the title, defeating all other women competitors by a substantial margin.

FINA Official Hopes Other Sports Follow Swimming's Transgender Ruling

Diluting the discourses that erupted later on, FINA members decided upon a new “gender inclusion policy” allowing only those swimmers who transitioned before the age of 12 to compete in women’s swimming events. Along with it, the federation also proposed an “open category.” The federation clarified that the decision does not encourage people to transition before the age of 12 but simply abides by “what the scientists are saying.”

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first published:June 21, 2022, 16:31 IST
last updated:June 21, 2022, 16:31 IST