Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear vetoes transgender sports ban

Press release from Fairness Campaign

Today, Governor Andy Beshear vetoed Senate Bill 83, a bill that would ban transgender girls and women’s participation in sports from sixth grade through college.

Below is a statement from Fairness Campaign Executive Director Chris Hartman:

“I applaud Governor Beshear for doing the right thing today and vetoing a harmful piece of legislation that would deprive transgender girls and young women of the opportunity to grow and learn from being on a team, simply because of who they are.

“From the start, this bill has been more about fear than fairness. In Kentucky’s entire school system, there is only one openly transgender girl we know playing on a school sports team. That student started her school’s field hockey team, recruited all of the other team members, and just wants the opportunity to play with her friends her eighth grade year.

“Instead of solving Kentucky’s real problems, the politicians behind this bill have used their power to bully this student and others like her. At a previous House Committee hearing of the bill, those politicians had to fly in people from out of state to give testimony in support of the bill, because few Kentuckians would. The bill is a carbon copy of the anti-trans bills sweeping the nation this past year, which ignore the policies already in place to ensure an equal playing field for student-athletes.

“We’re pleased with Governor Beshear’s actions. Today, he joins Republican governors in Utah and Indiana, who agree that these bills are unnecessary and harmful to kids, particularly kids that are transgender. But the rights of transgender people in Kentucky are still in danger. Next week, the legislature is expected to override the Governor’s veto. We urge state lawmakers to follow the lead of Governor Beshear and show compassion to transgender people in our commonwealth by choosing not to override this veto.”

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