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Trans-inclusive women’s soccer clubs have rebuked a bill to ban transgender women from playing on women’s sports teams, saying local clubs have happily welcomed trans women into competition for years.

Major national sporting codes including Rugby Australia, Cricket Australia and Athletics Australia have not been consulted on, or lobbied for, Claire Chandler’s Private Members Bill.

Scott Morrison has supported Senator Claire Chandler’s attempt to block transgender women from participating in women’s sports.Credit:Paul Jeffers, Alex Ellinghausen

Prime Minister Scott Morrison yesterday reaffirmed his support for the bill which was first introduced in February.

In response, progressive Melbourne Football Clubs on Tuesday called the move unnecessary and offensive.

Maddie Sheedy, president of the Melbourne University Women’s Football Club, said up to 10% of the club’s approximately 120 female players identified as transgender or gender diverse.

The club operates in the Victorian Amateur Football Association which allows trans women to play in the women’s competition and trans men to play in the men’s competition. Sheedy said his club was working with the VAFA to formalize the guidelines, but said there was already a provision in place for testosterone testing if needed.


“It’s just a shame that [transplayers’] rights and opportunities are so publicly discussed. We see them coming to practice, sitting there and saying, ‘God, it’s been another tough day,'” she said.

“I hope there will be more clubs speaking out and talking openly. No one wants to see their team-mates go through this.

Beth Cook, president of West Brunswick Football Club, said her club had a no questions asked rule about gender inclusion.

“We are quite vocal about our support and that we are an inclusive and progressive club. So I think people tend to figure out who we are pretty quickly and decide if we’re the right person. [for them],” she says.

She said her club were not worried about differences in strength and fairness in their women’s teams.

“We just welcome people in and train people in skills and how to tackle safely and be tackled safely, and how to protect themselves,” she said.

“We welcome and welcome anyone from the LGBTI+ community to our club, including trans and gender diverse players and do not support legislation that seeks to exclude or dehumanize them or not accept them in any form. is.”

Netball Australia and Cricket Australia also watered the campaign on Tuesday, saying they had received no government consultation on the proposed bill.

“Cricket Australia has a number of policies in place to ensure cricket is a game that everyone can play, including our trans and gender diversity policies for community and elite cricket,” said one. spokesperson.

A spokeswoman for Netball Australia said “sport must be inclusive for everyone, regardless of background, race or gender”.

The AFL, Cricket Australia, Tennis Australia, Football Australia, Rugby Australia and Athletics Australia have all already confirmed to the Herald and age there had been no contact from Senator or Morrison government officials before the bill was introduced.


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