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Transgender Athletes: The Student Athletic Network calls for clear guidance

The Student Sports Network of Quebec (RSEQ) is asking the Legault government to create clear and uniform rules for transgender athletes, who are more and more in number.

Born in the body of a boy, Valentina Cagna managed to join the Cégep de l’Abitibi-Témiscamingue women’s volleyball team this year. Good news for this young 21-year-old athlete, who has been playing in the men’s league for several years.

“You really had a season Highlight! It’s been one of the best I’ve had since I started.” Both at school and in her sport, Valentina’s sexual transition went smoothly. After a year of hormone therapy, she was able to start playing in the women’s league.

But this is not necessarily the case for all athletes. The young volleyball player has the opportunity to play in one of the rare federations that have issued guidelines for transgender people. Honestly, there must be discussions in order for there to be regulations [dans tous les sports]she pleads, so that trans people in the future can continue to play their sport.

A growing phenomenon

The RSEQ also requires Quebec to have clear guidance that applies to all majors. Currently, CEO Gustave Ruel must contact every sports federation for each case of a transgender person. If the phenomenon is new, it is increasing. Dozens of cases have been traced to him this year.

“It is not natural that we should not run football in the same way as in football or hockey. The standards should be the same, whereas at the moment we allow sports federations to legislate, and so, we could end up with fifteen different ways to legislate,” he says. And federations can to change [leurs règles] Two or three times a year! “

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Gustave Ruel calls for guidelines that will not change according to the decisions of international sports organizations.

He cites the example of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), which has just decided to exclude male and female transgender athletes from female competitions who have gone through puberty, which is the time to conduct more scientific studies. Only athletes who have transitioned before puberty can compete with women.

Include variable geometry

The general manager of Sport’Aide, an organization that provides support and listening services to young athletes, Sylvain Croto also requires a “uniform reference and team alignment” for all sports in Quebec.

“Currently, if we’re in an environment where people are inclusive, we can think that decision, approach might be favorable. Whereas if we get to other environments where people are inclusive, maybe the philosophy is less inclusive, maybe there’s a consensus that’s less appropriate and less helpful.” for inclusion.

RSEQ’s general manager for Quebec and Chaudière-Appalachian regions also wants tools to raise awareness among teammates and opponents of transgender athletes, as well as parents.

“We expect feedback and questions from parents, particularly with regard to what we have seen in the past year, [au niveau de] Morals and knowledge, it’s a little more difficult, ”recalls Matteo Russo.

Whatthey said

“What we want is to have clear, transversal lines and markings for all sports disciplines.” – Gustave Roel, President and CEO, Quebec Student Sports Network

“It’s a recent phenomenon, but we can’t turn our heads, it’s there and we’re going to get more and more of it.” – Sylvain Croteau, Managing Director of Sport’Aide

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“It went great, everyone was very open, they were very nice to me, the sports director did a very good job trying to find the rules to be able to get me into the women’s league.” – Valentina Cagna, young transgender volleyball player from Cégep de l’ Abitibi-Témiscamingue

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