WASHINGTON (TND) — The international governing body that oversees women's swimming adopted a new policy Monday that permits transgender swimmers to compete in women's events if they transitioned before age 12. FINA's new 24-page "gender inclusion policy" also proposed a new "open competition" category.
Parents Defending Education's Erica Sanzi said FINA's policy is "at odds" with the Biden administration's plans for Title IX.
"The Biden administration is planning on a total rewrite of Title IX," Sanzi said. "What they're going to lay out is exactly the opposite of what this international swimming organization has laid out ... the only reason I could see this having an impact is that it could exert pressure on other organizations to follow suit, and it could also now make it seem like the United States is going to become an outlier as we move in the opposite direction."
Sanzi said the ruling will have "no impact" on K-12 schools in the U.S. and the NCAA.
"In K-12 and also in higher education, things are going to actually move in the opposite direction for them," said Sanzi to The National Desk's Jan Jeffcoat.
FINA maintains that the new policy does not encourage transgender athletes to transition by the age of 12, which is below the World Professional Association for Transgender Health's recommended minimum age of 14 to start hormone treatment.
"This is not saying that people are encouraged to transition by the age of 12. It's what the scientists are saying, that if you transition after the start of puberty, you have an advantage, which is unfair," said James Pearce the spokesperson for FINA president Husain Al-Musallam.
"Because of this ruling, there are some concerns that we could see some clinicians and even parents put their children on sort of a fast track to transitioning before puberty so that their child can participate in athletics that align with their gender identity. I do think that there is reason to at least keep a watchful eye on that," said Sanzi.
Watch the full interview below.