Bill banning transgender athletes from school, college sports passes Florida House

Legislation would allow schools to request health exam to verify student’s sex

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A bill that would prevent men and transgender women from participating in Florida school and college sports designated for women passed in a Florida House vote Wednesday after two days of intense debate.

The bill called “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act” would also allow a school or institution to request a health examination and consent form to verify a student’s biological sex.

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House Bill 1475 passed after a 90-minute debate, 77 lawmakers voting in favor and 40 against.

The bill’s House sponsor Republican Rep. Kaylee Tuck, of Lake Placid, said Tuesday that the bill doesn’t ban transgender students from sports but “simply asking that they play based on their biological gender.”

House Democrats offered fiery counterpoints Wednesday during the debate.

“I don’t care how many times you tell yourself this is about women’s sports and not LGBTQ rights or discrimination, because that is wrong,” Orlando Rep. Anna Eskamani said.

LGBTQ rights groups, including Equality Florida, are already planning to fight the bill.

A corresponding Senate bill (SB 2012) was scheduled to be heard Wednesday in the Senate Rules Committee but was postponed and will not be heard this week. A new date has not been set.

Check back for updates on this developing story.