This week saw the global launch of the International Consortium on Female Sport “as the preeminent international lobby group to advocate for the preservation of the female sport category worldwide.”
As more and more biologically male athletes are being permitted to compete in female sport at both the domestic and international level, taking places, awards and opportunities from women and girls, such an initiative is more important than ever.
According to the announcement on its website, “ICFS is a nonpartisan, single-issue collective of female sport advocates who hold that fairness and safety for female athletes must be ensured by having a dedicated category for females — competitors who are biologically female and who have not experienced male puberty.”
Members include high-profile female athletes and women’s sport advocacy groups from around the world who have come together to take a strong stand to preserve female sport:
“Fifty percent of the world’s population deserves proper representation when decisions are to be made about their sports category. The creation of the ICFS is absolutely vital to the preservation of women’s sports.” – Dr Linda Blade, co-founder of the consortium and a representative of member group Canadian Women’s Sex-Based Rights (caWsbar)
“While most legal prohibitions against sex discrimination require assimilation and inclusion, sport requires sex segregation for safety and fairness for female athletes — it’s not a new concept.” – ICFS member Nancy Hogshead-Makar, a three-time Olympic champion swimmer, lawyer, and CEO of Champion Women
“All over the world women are fighting to see fairness for females restored in sport. It makes sense to do this together. The ICFS is a group that will make a difference.” – Fiona McAnena, spokesperson of UK-based group, Fair Play for Women (FPFW), a member group of ICFS
Women’s Forum Australia applauds this fantastic initiative and is proud to be an affiliate member.
Everyone should have an opportunity to play sport, but we need to make sure we have a fair playing field. If women and girls are to enjoy the myriad benefits of sporting achievement – health, fitness, camaraderie, personal goal-setting, leadership, character development, career opportunities, sponsorship and more – it is vital we protect the women’s sporting events that previous generations worked so hard to establish.
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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