On February 17th, 2021, House Bill 302 (“Preserving Sports for Female Students”) was passed with a vote of 50 – 23 in the Utah House. Although not surprising, this news was heartbreaking for the LGBTQ+ community not only in Utah but around the country as well.
In order for the government to protect groups from discrimination, the bills they pass and laws they create have to be non-discriminatory as well. Although Utah lawmakers explain that this rule isn’t to hurt trans athletes but rather to preserve the competitiveness and fairness in girls’ sports, I don’t believe this is necessarily true. Intentional or not, this law will inevitably hurt the transgender community in Utah and invalidate the LGBTQ+ community as a whole.
Utah has a lot of progress to go when it comes to creating an environment that is welcome to all people, and this includes the transgender community.