If you've been paying attending to Missouri politics this week, you know that girl's and women's sports is on the agenda.
Last week, I attended the House hearing which covered several bills related to Missouri's kids as they relate to transgender issues. It was a long ordeal and I didn't make it to the end, but it was definitely quite an evening. I did go back and watch the rest of what I missed - I total of about 9 hours worth of bill presentations, testimonies and inquiries.
I highly suggest you take a few minutes of your time to watch. It was divided into three sections, for your reference. I've noted the approximate times to help you find the section you'd like to view.
1. Women's sports bills. (4:30 pm to 8:00pm)
2. Transition surgeries & hormone therapy/puberty blockers for children. (8:00pm to 12:00am)
3. Drag shows (12:00am to the end)
Scroll to the hearings on 1/24/23 and find General Laws. Click to open video window.
The House General Laws Committee will vote on those bills this week in their executive meeting, I expect.
The Senate is handling these issues a little bit differently. They are hearing the girl's sports bills only this week. The hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, 1/31/23 at 10:00am in Senate Committee Room 1.
They are hearing a total of six bills having to do with girl's sports. Below you'll find a list, linked to the bill text along with a bulleted overview for comparison.
- SB 2 by Senator Denny Hoskins
- Prohibits males from playing in female sports based on genetics
- No adverse action against compliant schools
- Middle school through college
- Allows intramural games regardless of gender
- Withholds state funds if school is in violation
- SB 29 by Senator Tony Luetkemeyer
- Prohibits males from playing in female sports based on birth certificate or other government document
- Girls can compete with boys if a girl's team is not available to her
- Girls not allowed to play due to violation of policy may bring suit against school in violation.
- Implied to be K-12 as it mentions public school and charters, but not postsecondary
- SB 39 by Senator Holly Thompson-Rehder
- Includes "Where As" section referring to Title IX and past issues of discrimination
- Prohibits males from playing girl's sports based on genome and reproductive biology at birth. Also included is sex stated on birth certificate or other government documents
- References the Federal Title IX policy AS AMENDED. This is a red flag.
- Schools in violation will not receive state funding
- DESE shall promulgate all rules and regs. This is a red flad in regard to expanding DESE's authority. The legislation needs to be complete without allowance for DESE to create more rules. DESE, unelected bureaucrats, need to be removed from this policy making process.
- Applies to all grade levels and post secondary
- Does not prohibit adverse actions against schools OR allow schools to sue for being penalized for compliance
- SB 48 by Senator Mike Moon
- Prohibits males from participating in girl's sports based on genome and reproductive biology at birth
- Prohibits adverse action against schools in compliance
- Allows for action to be taken against organizations penalizing the school for complying
- Middle school through college.
- Public and private schools
- SB 87 by Senator Ben Brown
- Public K through 12th grade
- Private middle school and high school
- Every sponsor, organizing entity or facilitator of youth sports shall comply
- Intramural games open to all genders
- Gender determined by assignment at birth per birth certificate UNLESS it was changed due to specific physical disorders
- State funds withheld for schools in violation
- Schools may bring suit against any entity penalizing them for complying
- SB 165 by Senator Jill Carter
- Middle school through college
- Public or private schools
- Gender based on sex at birth as see on birth certificate
- Student who miss the opportunity to participate or suffer retaliation due to violation of policy may bring suit against the school
- Schools penalized by associations or agencies for complying may bring suit for damages
- Locker rooms and areas of "undress" shall be designated and separated for biological girls and boys. Students who choose not to use those facilities based on biological sex will be provided with alternative accommodations.
My personal favorite is Senator Carter's SB 165 because she included bathrooms and locker rooms as well as provision for students to be able to bring suit against the school if the school is in violation.
Senator Mike Moon has actually carried this bill for the past few years. I applaud him for that. I like his bill, also.
Senator Denny Hoskins is a good conservative voter and we can usually count on him to be standing on the right side of things. He's great on the floor and a stand up guy we can trust, which is hard to say about most of these politicians. Props to Senator Hoskins for including specific language for intramural sports. I like this language and I feel that it allows for the opportunity to play recreational sports, experience the fun and teamwork in an environment that everyone is agreement with.
Senator Tony Luetkemeyer's bill is ok. What he has included is fine but it doesn't cover the necessary bases in my opinion.
Senator Ben Brown's bill is the only one to include ALL youth sports. Although it would include community organized sports and he does have specific provisions for intramural sports.
Senator Holly Rehder's bill is just BAD. I do not support it and I don't recommend that you support it. DESE should not be mentioned as they need to promulgate NOTHING. And there's no reason to refer to the amended version of the federal Title IX in the "Where As" section. This section shouldn't be considered enforceable law, but it does not need to be codified in this manner. Here's an excerpt of the proposed amendments to Title IX:
The proposed regulations would clarify that Title IX’s prohibition on discrimination based on sex applies to discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. They would make clear that preventing someone from participating in school programs and activities consistent with their gender identity would cause harm in violation of Title IX, except in some limited areas set out in the statute or regulations. By providing this protection, the proposed provisions would carry out Title IX’s nondiscrimination mandate and help to ensure access to education free from sex discrimination for LGBTQI+ students and others. The Department plans to issue a separate notice of proposed rule making to address whether and how theDepartment should amend the Title IX regulations to address students’ eligibility to participate on a particular male or female athletics team.
For those of you coming to testify in the Senate Hearing, you are able to support/oppose multiple bills. Be specific in stating that information in your testimony. Personally, I would support Senator Carter's SB 165, Senator Moon's SB 48 and Senator Hoskin's SB 2. I would opposed Senator Rehder's SB 39.