2019 NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championship

Source: Jacob Kupferman / Getty

North Carolina legislators have proposed a new bill that would keep transgender girls from participating on girls’ sports teams. The “Save Women’s Sports Act” was presented by Republican lawmakers at the North Carolina General Assembly, according to News & Observer.

The bill is similar to those introduced in other states including one recently filed in South Carolina. Two states, Idaho and Mississippi,  have recently made laws prohibiting transgender girls from competing in sports.

Lawmakers argue that allowing the “self-identified girls” to participate in girls’ sports would “undermine the accomplishments and physical capabilities of girls born biologically female.”

The bill is receiving criticism from advocates of LGBTQ rights and others. Those against the bill say the backlash from “HB2” four years ago will be “history repeated”, if adopted into law.

Equality NC believes that the bill is discriminatory and “further escalates the emotional and mental struggles such as depression and low self-esteem that many transgender girls grapple with, particularly during the middle and high school years,” according to News & Observer.

“Young people all across this state, regardless of gender identity, deserve the opportunity to experience the benefits of being part of a sporting community — especially when trans youth already face disproportionate barriers to success in learning environments, said ”Rebby Kern, the Education Policy Director of Equality NC.

The bill is expected to be debated in the coming days.