(WTNH) — A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that sought to block transgender student-athletes from competing in high school sports in Connecticut.
The suit was filed against the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) and sought to halt transgender female athletes from participating in girls’ high school sports in Connecticut.
In a ruling released Sunday, U.S. District Court Judge Robert Chatigny dismissed the suit on procedural grounds.
Judge Chatigny wrote in the ruling, since the two transgender athletes in question in the lawsuit – Terry Miller of Bloomfield and Andraya Yearwood of Cromwell – had graduated, and the plaintiffs could not identify any other transgender female athletes, “the request to enjoin enforcement of the CIAC policy has become moot.”
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“I conclude that the plaintiffs’ challenge to the CIAC policy is not justiciable at this time and their claims for monetary relief are barred and dismiss the action on this basis without addressing the other grounds raised in the joint motion,” Judge Chatigny wrote in the ruling.
He left open the possibility, however, of a new legal challenge if more transgender athletes compete in the coming year.
Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) – whose attorneys represented the plaintiffs in this case – said they and the cisgender female student-athletes they represent will continue to challenge the CIAC’s policy that allows student-athletes to participate in sports corresponding with their gender identity. The student-athletes ADF represents say being forced to compete against two transgender sprinters deprived them of wins, state titles, and athletic opportunities.
On Monday, the CIAC released an officials statement on the U.S. District Court’s decision to dismiss the lawsuit challenging the organizations’ inclusive athletic participation policy.
The CIAC said, “The district court’s decision recognized that the CIAC policy reflects the federal guidance in place at the time it was adopted, and that there is no basis for a claim for damages against public schools who participate in CIAC sponsored athletics. The CIAC has maintained throughout this lawsuit that its inclusive participation policy aligns with both federal and state law, and it was prepared to defend this lawsuit on the merits had there been any basis for it to continue. The CIAC continues to welcome and support inclusive education-based athletic participation, including by transgender students, in accordance with its mission to promote meaningful participation in high school sports activities for all student-athletes.”