The families of female athletes from three Connecticut schools are suing the state’s governing body of high school sports in order to stop transgender athletes from competing against the girls.
The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference is targeted in the lawsuit over the success of two track champions from Bloomfield and Cromwell high schools.
The families of Selina Soule, Alanna Smith and Chelsea Mitchell are backed by a conservative Christian nonprofit, the Alliance Defending Freedom.
In a statement issued Wednesday, the ADF alleges Mitchell would have won the 2019 girls 55-meter dash state championship had she not been running against two athletes the statement describes as “males who identify as female.”
“Girls deserve to compete on a level playing field,” said ADF legal counsel Christiana Holcomb in the statement. “Forcing them to compete against boys isn’t fair, shatters their dreams and destroys their athletic opportunities.”
The ADF believes the organization of male and female athletes has always been based on biological differences.
The CIAC doesn’t see it that way. A spokesman told Connecticut Public Radio the organization is committed to equity in providing opportunities to student-athletes in Connecticut, and that its policy is appropriate under both state and federal law.
The CIAC says it will respond to the federal lawsuit after further review.