WASHINGTON, D.C. – Independent Women’s Law Center (IWLC) last week filed an amicus brief in support of female student athletes in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit.
The case, B.P.J. v. West Virginia State Board of Education, involves a challenge to a state statute that prohibits males from competing on women’s sports teams. A lower federal court rejected the challenge, concluding that West Virginia’s law is not discriminatory because it tracks Title IX, the federal law that requires equal athletic opportunities for males and females.
IWLC’s brief urges the Court of Appeals to uphold that ruling, explaining that a contrary interpretation would undermine equal opportunity.
Jennifer C. Braceras, director of Independent Women’s Law Center, said:
“Title IX was enacted to increase opportunities for women and girls, not to reduce them. Allowing even a single male to compete in women’s sports can take numerous opportunities away from women and girls — not only opportunities to win, but also opportunities for roster spots, playing time, leadership roles, and scholarships.”
Riley Gaines, Stand with Women spokeswoman at Independent Women’s Forum and 12x NCAA All-American swimmer, said: “More and more people are becoming empowered and emboldened enough to find it crucial to defend women’s sports. I saw firsthand what happens when we don’t. Women are sent a clear message from the people in power that our feelings, privacy, safety, and fairness don’t matter. As a female athlete, I’m grateful and proud to stand with the Independent Women’s Law Center in fighting to save women’s sports.”
The brief can be found HERE.