New Mexico

N.M. transgender students must follow birth certificate to join high school teams


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The organization that regulates high school sports and activities across the state of New Mexico has updated its policy in regards to transgender students, and will only allow students to participate in sports based on the gender listed on their birth certificate.

Previously, N.M. schools would have allowed an student athletes to participate on a girls or boys sports team based on a physical examination by a doctor.

But under a decision announced last week by the New Mexico Activities Association, students may only participate on teams according to their birth gender, or the gender recorded on an amended birth certificate.

The state’s current regulations regarding amending a birth certificate requires medical proof of gender reassignment surgery.

“We think athletics and activities are good for all kids, and so we’re always going to go with it’s good for all kids … be it transgender male, be it transgender female,” Sally Marquez, NMAA’s executive director told KRQE-TV Wednesday.

But members of the NMAA also say they are concerned that a physically developed male who wanted to play female sports would have an unfair advantage.

LGBT activists complain that the change in policy won’t be helpful to most high school transgender kids as, in a majority of cases, they are not ready at that age to progress through transitioning genders.

Last week, lawmakers in California approved a transgender student rights bill that allow students “to participate in sex-segregated programs, activities and facilities” based on their self-perception, regardless of their birth gender.

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