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Judge Deals Blow to Law Keeping Biological Males out of Girls' Sports

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A federal judge on Monday issued a temporary injunction to stop Idaho from enacting a law banning biological males who identify as transgender females from participating in women’s sports while a legal challenge moves forward.

The ruling means biological males wanting to participate in women’s sports can do so this fall at the college and secondary school level, The Idaho Statesman reported.

U.S. District Judge David Nye in Idaho ruled that a preliminary injunction is warranted because the plaintiffs are likely to win in court as part of a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union challenging the constitutionality of the law.

Nye said the law “stands in stark contrast to the policies of elite athletic bodies that regulate sports both nationally and globally.”

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Lindsay Hecox, a biologically male student at Boise State University who is transgender and had been planning to try out for the women’s cross country team.

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“I feel a major sense of relief,” Hecox said Monday in a news release.

“I’m a girl, and the right team for me is the girls’ team. It’s time courts recognize that and I am so glad that the court’s ruling does.”

In March Idaho Gov. Brad Little signed the measure, passed by Republicans during the 2020 state legislative session, into law.

“Transgender people belong in Idaho, including on school sports teams,” Ritchie Eppink, legal director for the ACLU of Idaho, said in a news release. “This is a welcome first step.”

Should biological males be allowed to compete in women's sports?

It’s the second time this month that a federal judge has effectively rejected a new transgender law in Idaho.

Last week, U.S. Magistrate Candy Dale said the state’s latest attempt to ban people from changing the gender on their birth certificate violates a court order she issued two years ago stopping a similar law.

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