British Rowing, the governing body for the sport of rowing in the UK, will reportedly leave the organization’s transgender participation policy in the hands of members.
The governing body has asked its members to vote on their preferred policy regarding transgender athletes, The Telegraph reported on Thursday. One of the options reportedly includes «taking a new approach for the female/female category in particular, allowing only athletes who have been declared female at birth to compete in the ‘female’ category.»
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Additionally, the 31,500 members could vote to maintain the existing policy or align with World Rowing, which requires transgender athletes to have testosterone levels of 2.5 nanomoles per liter for a two-year period. Around 45% of British Rowing members are women.
British Rowing’s policy requires less than 5 nanomoles per liter for a transgender competitor to be eligible.
British Rowing chairman Mark Davies previously called for an open category in the sport.
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«At British Rowing, we are about to publish an update to our transgender policy which will align it with that of World Rowing,» Davies told the World Rowing Congress in October, via Reuters. «World Rowing is less protective of women’s sport than some other international federations such as FINA, which has adopted a policy of having open and women’s categories.
«Would World Rowing consider its policy out of concern that there is a threat to the hard-fought progress in women’s sport and consider following FINA’s lead?»
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British Rowing is expected to speak about the results on May 27, according to The Telegraph.