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Tags: lia thomas | transgender | womens sports | ivy | swimming

Transgender Swimmer Should Not Compete, 16 Penn Teammates Say

Transgender Swimmer Should Not Compete, 16 Penn Teammates Say
Lia Thomas, a transgender woman, swims for the University of Pennsylvania at an Ivy League swim meet against Harvard University on Jan. 22, 2022, in Cambridge, Mass. (Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 03 February 2022 05:36 PM EST

The women's advocacy group Champion Women sent a letter Thursday on behalf of 16  University of Pennsylvania women's swimming team members urging Ivy League officials not to challenge a new NCAA gender policy, The Washington Post reported.

The letter, sent on behalf of 16 anonymous Penn women's swimming team members, pushes their school and other Ivy League officials to avoid litigating against a new policy that may exclude their teammate Lia Thomas from competing in the March championships.

The NCAA's new rules require Thomas, a transgender woman, to submit documentation that proves she has undergone at least one year of testosterone-suppression treatment and is below the maximum allowable level for the competition.

The 16 teammates asserted that Thomas, who transitioned after three years competing on the university's men's team, has taken ''competitive opportunities'' away from them.

''We fully support Lia Thomas in her decision to affirm her gender identity and to transition from a man to a woman. Lia has every right to live her life authentically,'' the letter, sent by Champion Women CEO Nancy Hogshead-Makar, read.

''However, we also recognize that when it comes to sports competition, that the biology of sex is a separate issue from someone's gender identity. Biologically, Lia holds an unfair advantage over competition in the women's category, as evidenced by her rankings that have bounced from #462 as a male to #1 as a female.

''If she were to be eligible to compete against us, she could now break Penn, Ivy, and NCAA Women's Swimming records; feats she could never have done as a male athlete.''

Hogshead-Makar said the swimmers remained anonymous because they were told they would ''be removed from the team or that we would never get a job offer'' if they spoke out against Thomas' inclusion in women's competition.

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The women's advocacy group Champion Women sent a letter Thursday on behalf of 16 University of Pennsylvania women's swimming team members urging Ivy League officials not to challenge a new NCAA gender policy, The Washington Post reported.
lia thomas, transgender, womens sports, ivy, swimming
298
2022-36-03
Thursday, 03 February 2022 05:36 PM
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