Updated 3/25/22 — Today, the Utah State Legislature voted to override Governor Spencer Cox’s veto of House Bill 11, effectively banning transgender youth from competing in sports according to their gender identity. This makes Utah the 12th state to pass anti-transgender athlete legislation.
As reported by U.S. News & World Report, in his vow to veto the bill, Cox directly addressed transgender student-athletes, who he said found themselves the subject of political debate through no fault of their own.
“I just want them to know that it’s gonna be okay. We’re gonna work through this,” Cox said.
“We are incredibly grateful to Governor Cox, Equality Utah, and all who have fought for transgender youth in Utah to be treated with compassion,” said Joanna Hoffman, Director of Communications at Athlete Ally. “Sport is a powerful force for physical and metal health, and instills lifelong lessons on teamwork and discipline. Every child, including our transgender youth, deserves to have their life changed for the better through sport.
Governor Cox has demonstrated tremendous leadership in this veto. Even though his efforts were overridden, we hope to see political leaders across the country follow his lead in choosing compassion and respect over blatant discrimination and cruelty. Utah transgender youth, you are loved, and we will never stop fighting for your right to participate in the sport you love.”