We are excited to announce the release of our new report, A Fair Playing Field: Protecting Women’s Single-Sex Sport.
In Australia and internationally, sporting bodies face increasing pressure to include biological males who identify as women in female sporting events. Recent cases like US trans swimmer Lia Thomas who blitzed female competitors, and Kiwi trans weightlifter Laurel Hubbard who made it into the Olympics, are just the tip of the iceberg.
Drawing on evidence-based research, our report explains how transgender inclusion jeopardises the physical safety of women and girls, fairness in competition, and the full range of opportunities afforded by sport.
Research has shown that male athletes who have experienced male puberty are up to 50% stronger, 30% more powerful, 40% heavier, and about 15% faster than female players.
And World Rugby modelling has shown that males competing against women in contact sports can put female athletes at a 20–30% greater risk of being injured.
Australian swimming champions like Dawn Fraser, Emma McKeon and Emily Seebohm agree that biological sex differences matter in sport and that ignoring them defeats the very purpose of a separate female sporting category – namely to ensure women and girls enjoy a sporting chance of success. And it seems international swim body FINA – which recently made the landmark decision to restrict biological men from competing in elite women’s swimming competitions – agrees!
But while more and more female athletes are speaking out, and positive developments are being made at the international level, we still need to convince our politicians in Australia to listen. Now is the time for Australia to take the lead at the national level.
That’s where we need your action. Sign the petition today to ask every federal MP to legislate protections for women's single-sex sport. This includes putting the biological definitions of ‘woman’ and ‘man’ back in the Sex Discrimination Act, in order to restore protections for women’s sport and the sex-based rights of women and girls more broadly.
And they already have a template for doing so, thanks to Senator Claire Chandler’s Save Women’s Sport Bill.
We’ll be sending every federal MP a copy of our report asking them to restore the protections for women’s sporting events that previous generations worked so hard to establish.
Equipped with this report, you’ll get the facts you need to understand key issues like:
- When does an advantage become an unfair advantage?
- Why is testosterone so significant?
- How does trans inclusion limit career progression for young female athletes?
- Why is Australian law currently failing women and girls?
You’ll also see eye-opening examples of how this is all playing out – like how trans athlete Hannah Mouncey went from representing Australia in the men’s handball team, to playing in the women’s handball team as well as the VFL Women’s League.
So sign the petition to tell our politicians to protect women’s sport and, as a bonus, you’ll get the facts that will help you speak up with confidence to protect the rights and safety of women and girls.
Everyone should have an opportunity to play sport, but we need make sure we have a fair playing field!
Women’s Forum Australia is an independent think tank that undertakes research, education and public policy advocacy on issues affecting women and girls, with a particular focus on addressing behaviours and practices that are harmful and abusive to them. We are a non-partisan, non-religious, tax-deductible charity. We do not receive any government funding and rely solely on donations to make an impact. Support our work today.
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