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Federal appeals court upholds Connecticut's transgender athlete policy

Terry Miller, Andraya Yearwood
Pat Eaton-Robb
Bloomfield High School transgender athlete Terry Miller, second from left, wins the final of the 55-meter dash over transgender athlete Andraya Yearwood, far left, and other runners in the Connecticut girls Class S indoor track meet at Hillhouse High School, on Feb. 7, 2019, in New Haven, Connecticut.

A federal appeals court has upheld a Connecticut Interscholastic Athletics Conference policy that allows transgender youth to play on the teams most consistent with their gender identity.

Soule v. Connecticut Association of Schools is the first such federal case in the country.

The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed the plaintiff’s claim that the CIAC policy allowing two transgender athletes, Andraya Yearwood and Terry Miller to participate, denied other girls opportunities or championships.

The court found that on many occasions the plaintiffs placed first in various events, even sometimes when competing against Yearwood and Miller.

It ruled that the CIAC policy conforms with Title IX, the federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in educational programs.

Yearwood and Miller were defended by the ACLU of Connecticut.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.