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Buenos Aires passes law allowing athletes to compete under perceived gender

Friday, December 28th 2018 - 07:43 UTC
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 “Everyone has the right to the practice of sports activities under your gender identity,” said Susbielles. “Everyone has the right to the practice of sports activities under your gender identity,” said Susbielles.

The Argentine Province of Buenos Aires has signed into law a bill whereby athletes shall be allowed to compete both professionally and as amateurs in accordance with their perceived gender.

The bill was passed by the provincial legislature in November and became applicable since appearing in the Official Gazette Wednesday afternoon.

The original bill was introduced by provincial Senator Federico Susbielles of Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner's Unidad Ciudadana (UC) in the aftermath of the case of Saira Millaqueo, a transgender female field hockey player who was repeatedly banned from competing as a woman until a judicial ruling mandated otherwise.

“Everyone has the right to the practice of sports activities under your gender identity,” said Susbielles, who added that with the new law any club or federation that denies any transgender person such a right will face legal consequences for their discriminatory actions.

In this regard, provincial law 15.100 is to be viewed as a bylaw for National Gender Identity Law 26.743 of 2012, Susbielle explained.

Observers welcomed the new law in general but objected that in some sports like women's boxing or wrestling having been born a man may prove hazardous to the rival.

In June 2015, transgender mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Fallon Fox brutally injured Tamikka Brents just two minutes into the first round of the match. Brents suffered a damaged orbital bone, which required seven staples, and a concussion.

“I’ve fought a lot of women and never felt the strength I felt in a fight as I did that night,” Brents said days later in an interview. “I can only say, I’ve never felt so overpowered ever in my life, and I am an abnormally strong female in my own right,” she added.

But the same principle doesn't seem to work the other way around. Earlier this month Patricio Manuel became the first transgender man to win a boxing match against a cisgender rival in the United States.

For the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Games, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) allowed athletes transitioning from female to male to compete without restrictions but those in the opposite direction were required to undergo surgical or hormone treatments.

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

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