Trans swimmers will no longer be able to compete in women’s swimming races following a rule change designed to protect female athletes.
Global swimming regulator Fina says the move will make women’s swimming fairer and “protect the rights of our athletes to compete.”
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Nadine Dorries welcomed the news and said other sports should now follow swimming’s example and ban trans women from competing in female competitions.
Instead, she said, trans athletes should have their own separate category to compete in.
The sports minister said:
“I think it is absolutely the right decision they have reached.
“It is just unacceptable that trans women compete in women’s sports.
“If you have been through puberty you cannot reverse the size of your feet, the density of your bone…
“If you are born biologically female or male you cannot change that.
“You can trans to be a woman or a man and the government will support you… but you can’t compete in a gender you are not born into.”
According to reports Sharron Davies, 1980 Olympic swimming medalist for Great Britain and advocate for women’s rights, broke down in tears when the verdict came in.
She told The Times:
“I am over the moon. I couldn’t stop crying. Here’s a decision that finally backs the rights of women to have their own category saved for female athletes. It’s been a long, hard road and anyone who spoke up for women, pointed to the obvious science and how it plays out in sports like swimming has been bullied and harassed. I hope this gives other sports the courage top do the right thing and empower women to speak up without feeling they’re going to be shot down in flames.”
The former GB swimming star thanked the body for “doing the science” and “standing up for fair sport for females.”
Among the world-leading experts in the fields of human development, endocrinology and human performance and exercise physiology consulted, Australian Dr. Sandra Hunter who specialises in sex and age differences in humans explained:
“Testosterone is an anabolic steroid and enhances athletics performance. Males are stronger, faster, their hearts pump more blood … Even if testosterone is later suppressed, many of the key effects of puberty will be retained.”
Transgender women will now only be eligible to compete against other women if they complete transition by the age of 12 and they must also have not gone through male puberty.
The decision means US male-born swimmer Lia Thomas who controversially won an American college championship in March and hinted she would compete in the 2024 Olympics, has now been barred from competing against women.
Prior to transitioning, Thomas was ranked 554th in the male 200 yard swim rankings.
According to US reports, sixteen of Lia’s Penn State teammates sent a letter to US college sport bosses pleading for Thomas to be banned.
According to Fina, 71 per cent of their members voted for the latest rule change.