Press Release • April 20, 2023

Equality NC Stands in Opposition to Continued Passage of Trans Sports Ban

For Immediate Release

Alainna Liloia | Equality NC |

RALEIGH – Today, the NC Senate passed SB 631, which bans trans young people from participating in sports congruent with their gender identity. The bill now heads to the House, where the companion bill was already passed.

The sports ban is a step backwards for our state and is one of many bills filed this session attacking queer and trans people. Anti-LGBTQ+ bills in the legislature include a drag ban and an anti-LGBTQ+ curriculum ban, as well as multiple gender-affirming care bans. All of these bills share a common agenda – legislating queer and trans people out of existence.

Trans sports bans are not about protecting girls or women. If legislators cared about the real issues facing girls and women in sports, they would be working to provide funding, resources, and protections that actually benefit female athletes. Instead, they are passing legislation to harm trans kids – sending the message to all queer and trans people that their identities are not valid and that they cannot live their lives fully as themselves in our state.

In school and in sports, trans kids deserve to find safety and belonging. And in North Carolina, all queer and trans people deserve to be who they are without fear of discrimination. We urge our legislators to focus on real issues and to stop attacking the LGBTQ+ community with legislation that is harmful, discriminatory, and cruel.

ENC Executive Director Kendra R. Johnson (she/her) said:

We are saddened, enraged and exhausted by the persistent attacks on our communities. We know that this does not represent our state and that this is not what North Carolinians want for the LGBTQ+ community. We have been down this road before with the passage of HB 2 in 2016, and we know that this sports ban will only hurt our economy. We also know that it will harm the mental and physical wellbeing of our kids by depriving them of the many benefits that sports have to offer. We stand in solidarity with the queer and trans kids who have borne the brunt of these targeted legislative attacks. We will keep fighting to build a state and a country where LGBTQ+ kids are safe and celebrated.

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Equality North Carolina builds LGBTQ+ power through advocacy, education, and uplifting the stories of queer and trans North Carolinians in pursuit of racial and social justice.

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