A girls' track athlete from Glastonbury (Conn.) High School has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, claiming inclusion of transgender athletes in a qualifying race kept her from completing in the New England regionals.
Selina Soule, 16, claims two biological boys who identify as female ran in the same 55-meter event as she did, denying her the sixth-place finish needed to advance to the regionals, where she says college coaches could have seen her compete.
Appearing on Tucker Carlson's Fox News program last week, Soule said, "No one in the state of Connecticut is happy about this, but no one has enough courage to speak up."
"I haven’t been the only one affected by this," she said. "There have been countless other female athletes in the state of Connecticut, as well as my entire indoor track team. We missed out on winning the state open championship because of the team that the transgender athlete was on."
As reported by AlphaNews, Christiana Holcomb, legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, a Christian legal aid group, joined Selina for the interview. Holcomb said the organization filed the complaint to bring justice to Selina’s situation.
"Alliance Defending Freedom, on behalf of Selina and a couple of other brave female athletes, has filed or is in the process of filing a Title IX complaint asking the Department of Education to step in, to investigate, and to restore a level playing field for Selina," Holcomb said.
If the two boys who identify as girls had not been allowed to compete as girls, Selina says, she would have placed sixth and had the opportunity to run the 55 in front of college coaches at the New England regionals.
Her complaint, according to a press release from Alliance Defending Freedom, asks the Education Department "to investigate illegal discrimination against the Connecticut athletes," including Selina.
Since the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference implemented a protocol “that allows biological males who claim a female identity to compete in girls' athletic events," the complaint says, "boys have consistently deprived Soule and the other female athletes of honors and opportunities to compete at elite levels."
"Girls like Selina should never be forced to be spectators in their own sports, but, unfortunately, that is exactly what is taking place when you allow biological males to compete in sports that have been set aside and specifically designed for women like Selina," Holcomb said. "Title IX was designed to ensure that girls have a fair shake at athletics, and are not denied the opportunity to participate at the highest levels of competition."