The Senate in Mississippi passed a bill on Thursday that prohibits transgender athletes from playing in women's sports and bans them from competing against biological females in Mississippi schools and universities.
According to the Associated Press, the Mississippi Senate Bill 2536 or "Mississippi Fairness Act," sponsored by Republican Sen. Angela Hill of Picayune, was passed in a vote of 34-9. However, 5 Senators did not partake in the votation and some 4 Senators voted "present," which means that they were neither for nor against the bill.
The Senate bill states:
"An act to create the "Mississippi fairness act"; to require any public school, public institution of higher learning or institution of higher learning that is a member of the NCAA, NAIA, MHSAA or NJCCA to designate its athletic teams or sports according to biological sex; to provide protection for any school or institution of higher education that maintains separate athletic teams or sport for students of the female sex; to create private causes of action, and for related purposes."
Republican Sen. Angela Hill explained that several coaches across the state led by Republicans called her to share their concerns over the executive order recently passed by Joe Biden that allows transgender athletes to play and compete with biological females in sports.
"I've had numerous coaches across the state call me and believe that they feel there's a need for a policy in Mississippi because they are beginning to have some concerns of having to deal with this," Hill explained.
The Senators, however, did not reveal whether or not transgender athletes were presently competing in the State and even Hill did not mention any further information, according to the Associated Press.
In response to Biden's executive order on the allowance of transgender athletes in women's sports team, Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves, also a father of 3 daughters, tweeted on Feb 4 saying, "My girls practice tirelessly. They work hard. They've learned how to win and, yes, they've learned what it feels like to be on the wrong end of the final score."
"It is also why I am so disappointed over President Biden's actions to force young girls like them to compete with biological males for access to athletics. It will limit opportunity for so many competitors like my daughters. It is bad policy and it is wrong for America," he added.
Mississippi is not the only state in the U.S. to propose the banning of transgender athletes in women's sports, Christian Headlines reported.
A report by New York Post declared that aside from Mississippi, other states including North Dakota, Utah, and Tennessee have passed similar measures arguing that transgender athletes have an unfair disadvantage to biological females as they are naturally stronger and faster.
On the other hand, the Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ advocacy group, issued a statement on Wednesday and labeled the proposed anti-transgender bill as an attempt to "sow fear and hate."
"These bills are not addressing any real problem, and they're not being requested by constituents," the statement reads. "Rather, this effort is being driven by national far-right organizations attempting to sow fear and hate."