June 23, 2020


On Title IX Anniversary, Family Policy Alliance Calls on Lawmakers to #SaveGirlsSports

The federal non-discrimination law has spelled good news for female athletes  — but Family Policy Alliance isn’t celebrating

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado—Today is the anniversary of Title IX, the federal civil rights law that ensures equal access to educational and athletic opportunities for girls. But at a time when males who identify as female are being permitted to play in female sports, Family Policy Alliance and a growing movement are honoring Title IX’s anniversary with the #SaveGirlsSports campaign.

The #SaveGirlsSports campaign includes a petition to state lawmakers urging them to proactively ensure girls’ sports are reserved for girls in their states, a nationwide social media campaign, and the awareness-building #SaveGirlsSports week this week over the 48th anniversary of Title IX. The message of the campaign is clear:  it’s only fair for girls’ sports to be reserved for girls—not boys who self-identify as girls.

Autumn Leva, former athlete and Vice President of Strategy for Family Policy Alliance, shared why she is not celebrating on Title IX’s anniversary today:

“Today, every 2 in 5 girls play sports—thanks to Title IX. Nearly 50 years of girls gaining equal access to athletic opportunities and a massive increase in female athletic participation should be worth celebrating! But I’m not celebrating because I’m not sure my infant daughter will be able to enjoy the same opportunities in athletics under Title IX that I did when I was an athlete. Activists like the ACLU have girls’ sports on the chopping block to score a political point.”

The ACLU, LGBT activist groups, and others have been pushing for boys to take the place of girls on their athletic teams, at their podiums, and in their athletic scholarships—if the boys “identify” as girls.

Prior to 1972, there were virtually no college scholarships available for women to play sports. Girls were lucky if they even had a sports team at their school. If they did, there were no private locker rooms, low quality uniforms (if any), old and unsafe training equipment often passed down from the boys’ teams, no travel stipends, absurdly early or late practice times to accommodate the boys’ more reasonable and fuller schedules, no championship opportunities or divisions, and certainly no scholarship money.

Title IX was a key factor in turning the tide for girls’ sports, but Leva says the law is under attack today.

“Permitting boys to compete on girls’ teams is a slap in the face to Title IX and to past, present, and future female athletes of all ages. After all, if boys can simply take the place of girls, we may as well erase Title IX and go back to the 1960’s. We will not abandon the decades-old fight to advance athletic opportunities for our girls,” Leva added.

The debate over what it means to be “male” or “female” has never been hotter. Just within the past few months leading up to this Title IX anniversary, these major developments have occurred:

  • In March, Idaho became the first state in the nation to pass a law ensuring girls’ sports remain only for girls (not boys who identify as girls). Now the state is being sued by the ACLU to enjoin the good law, and the ACLU is pressuring the NCAA to remove all sporting events from Idaho as “punishment.”
  • President Trump’s Education, HUD, and HHS departments have all made very positive moves to protect the definition of sex as biological sex only, including when it comes to Title IX.
  • The Supreme Court issued a decision on the 15th declaring that the meaning of “sex” in Title VII, a sister civil rights law to Title IX in the employment context, should include “gender identity.” Though the decision was extremely disappointing, Justice Gorsuch’s opinion made clear that the Court was not changing the meaning of “sex” in Title IX—and that that question was a different scenario, making it all the more important that we work to protect the definition of sex in Title IX.
  • Just last week, the Supreme Court’s Bostock decision permitted the word “sex” in Title VII, a sister civil rights law to Title IX, to include “gender identity” in certain employment contexts.
  • This past Friday, the Trump Administration’s Department of Justice filed a motion of support for Idaho’s “Fairness in Women’s Sports Law.”
  • Family Policy Alliance kicked off the #SaveGirlsSports campaign on June 22nd.
  • Title IX’s 48th anniversary is today, June 23rd.

Organizations partnering in the #SaveGirlsSports campaign to-date include:

To participate in the Save Girls’ Sports campaign, individuals and organizations are encouraged to use #SaveGirlsSports to post their stories of the importance of girls’ sports in their own lives, and their support for laws like Idaho’s. Individuals can also add the campaign logo to their Facebook profile picture using the campaign’s eye-catching Facebook frame.

The debate over sex and gender has come to a boiling point—and the need for #SaveGirlsSports is critical.

Media Contact:

Robert Noland, (719) 308-2822, Media@FamilyPolicyAlliance.com


Family Policy Alliance works to advance biblical citizenship and promote good public policy that protects religious freedom, families, and life.

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