On Tuesday, Governor Kay Ivey of Alabama signed a bill that would prevent transgender people from participating in collegiate sports for women. Athletes who do not conform to gender norms are now prohibited from participating in K-12 sports in the state.
Ivey has demanded that ESPN clarify its coverage of the new rule.
The proposed law would extend the restriction on male participation in women-only sports at the collegiate level, which is currently in effect in Alabama for grades K–8. ESPN reported on it as though the law prohibited “transgender women” from participating in certain sports.
Ivey asked that the network change all references to “transgender women” to “men.”
As ESPN said, the measure expands the state’s ban on transgender athletes on K-12 sports teams to include college teams.
Ivey signed the measure after making a statement claiming the prohibition was motivated by a desire to advance equality.
In a statement, Ivey said if you were born a boy in Alabama, you could not participate in sports traditionally reserved for females. She said this is strictly about fairness.
After Texas outlawed transgender operations for children, thus ending puberty blockers and hormone treatments on kids, Alabama followed suit by prohibiting men from playing in women’s collegiate sports. Minors already getting treatment for gender change before the law’s passing will be granted a limited exception.
The state of Texas has issued the nation’s most extensive prohibition on the practice.
The measure states that a doctor shall not execute a mastectomy or any other surgical procedure that would result in the sterilization of a child or the removal of otherwise healthy tissue or body parts or prescribe any substance that would result in temporary or permanent infertility.
In May, Florida joined other states in banning transgender surgery and “gender-affirming” medical care for children.
The bill would ensure that children would not be surgically or chemically altered to align with their preferred gender.