North Dakota Legislature passes transgender sports bill

April 15, 2021 GMT

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The Republican-led North Dakota Legislature has passed a bill restricting transgender girls from participating in public elementary and secondary school sports and sent the measure to Gov. Doug Burgum.

The Senate passed the bill Thursday that was endorsed by the House on Wednesday. The bill prohibits K-12 schools from “knowingly” allowing a student to join an athletic team exclusively for their opposite gender, but does allow girls to play on boys teams.

The American Civil Liberties Union says the legislation is unconstitutional and opens the state up to costly litigation.


The legislation, passed by a House-Senate conference committee earlier this week, includes an optional interim study of the impact of the bill on student athletic events. Any recommendations would be forwarded to the 2023 Legislature.

Supporters of the bill say it ensures fairness in girls sports. Opponents say the bill discriminates against transgender youth and risks possible legal action.

Burgum has not stated his position on the issue. The North Dakota High School Activities Association opposes the bill.