CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — On Thursday, the West Virginia State Senate passed a bill (HB 3293) that would ban transgender girls and women from participating in sports at the elementary, secondary, or post-secondary level consistent with their gender identity. The amended bill is now on its way back to the House for its vote.
In March, the House originally passed the bill with a 78-20 vote in March.
According to the Human Rights Campaign, West Virginia is one of 30 states that has introduced a slate of discriminatory, anti-LGBTQ legislation this session. The organization claims this is a part of an effort led by national groups aiming to “stymie” LGBTQ progress made on the national level and in many states.
There are currently more than 200 anti-LGBTQ bills under consideration in state legislatures across the country, the Campaign says. Of those, 105 directly target transgender people and almost half of those (56 bills) would ban transgender girls and women from participating in sports consistent with their gender identity — like the HB 3293 bill.
“The West Virginia state legislature is stoking fear and division by advancing HB 3293 — a discriminatory anti-transgender bill that has no place in West Virginia or this country. There is no evidence that supports the need for this legislation, and it will jeopardize the wellbeing of transgender kids across the state — who are just kids who want to play,”Human Rights Campaign President Alphonso David
“This fight is far from over,” said Fairness West Virginia Executive Director Andrew Schneider. “Transgender kids across West Virginia deserve love, support, and the chance to fully participate in the sport they love, and we’ll continue standing up for them every day.”