GLSEN Condemns Texas Anti-Transgender Sports Ban

Urges Federal Nondiscrimination Protections to Protect Transgender Youth

October 25, 2021

GLSEN Condemns Texas Anti-Transgender Sports Ban, Urges Federal Nondiscrimination Protections to Protect Transgender Youth

Today, October 25, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed HB 25, a law that restricts transgender student-athletes from playing on school sports teams that align with their gender identity. Under HB 25, transgender students will only be permitted to compete on sports teams that correspond to the gender listed on their birth certificate that was assigned at or near the time of birth.

“Opponents of LGBTQ+ equality are using our transgender youth as part of their politically-motivated assault on the equal rights of transgender people,” said GLSEN Interim Executive Director Melanie Willingham-Jaggers. “GLSEN strongly condemns Governor Abbott for signing HB 25 into law and we will continue to devote our support and resources to the transgender young people in Texas and across the country who are leading the fight against these kinds of cruel political attacks.

“The exclusion of transgender children from school sports does irreparable harm, fueling bias, fear, and discrimination in our schools and among our youth. According to GLSEN’s 2019 National School Climate Survey, more than 80 percent of transgender students experience gender-based bullying and victimization at school and more than 40 percent missed school in the last month because they felt unsafe.

“Texas’ new ban proves that we cannot continue to rely on an incomplete patchwork of local and state protections for vulnerable LGBTQ+ youth. Federal nondiscrimination protections like those found in the Safe Schools Improvement Act are urgently needed to put an end to these state-by-state attempts to strip transgender young people of their basic rights. Transgender students, binary and nonbinary, should have the same access to athletic participation as their classmates.

“We’ll continue to push federal leaders to deliver real solutions for young people, and in the meantime, GLSEN will continue supporting students, families and educators across the country with resources on LGBTQ+ inclusive athletics. Schools across the country can do their part to stand up against this wave of anti-transgender rhetoric by creating affirming and inclusive athletic spaces in their own communities. Every student should have equal opportunity in education where they can thrive and reach their full potential.”

GLSEN provides resources for students, educators, coaches, and families for creating safe and inclusive physical education classes and athletics for LGBTQ+ individuals through their groundbreaking program, Changing the Game.



GLSEN works to create safe and inclusive schools for all. GLSEN envisions a world in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, and/or gender expression. Each year, GLSEN programs and resources reach millions of students and educators in K-12 schools, via action at the national, state, and local level. Since 1990, GLSEN has improved conditions for LGBTQ+ students across the United States and helped launch an international movement to address LGBTQ+ issues in education.