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Burgum signs two transgender sports bills

Governor Doug Burgum has signed two bills into law that will restrict transgender females in high school and college sports.

House Bill 1249 affects high school sports, while House Bill 1489 affects college sports.

In a statement, Burgum said, “Thoughtful debate over policy in this area should involve the pursuit of two goals: to continue to ensure fairness in North Dakota girls’ sports and demonstrate compassion and understanding for all North Dakota youth.”

Burgum said HB 1249 codifies rules adopted by the North Dakota High School Activities Association in 2022.

The ACLU of North Dakota says the two bills violate the Constitution as well as Title 19 of the Civil Rights Act. In a statement, it called the signing of the two bills “shameful,” and “reinforces the incorrect notion that transgender students are not entitled to the same dignity and respect as all students.”

Burgum said there has not been a single incident of a transgender girl playing or asking to play on a girls’ team in North Dakota.

Both bills were introduced by Rep. Ben Koppelman (R-West Fargo).

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