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England Touch Association celebrates International Transgender Day of Visibility

Today marks the 12th annual International Transgender Day of Visibility, an event that celebrates the resilience and success of transgender people and raises awareness of transgender rights. In marking this, the England Touch Association (ETA) is pleased to share its leading principle for transgender inclusion in Touch.

As a sport for all, we celebrate and value the inclusion of transgender people in Touch and strive towards providing a safe and welcoming environment for people to be their authentic self but we believe that more needs to be done.

Research shows that more than half of transgender people feel excluded from sport or have at one point stopped participating as a result of their gender identity. Non-cisgender people are also three times more likely to report bad experiences in sport1. 

In recognising this, we are committed to removing barriers to participation in Touch, including those faced by transgender poeple. We will be supported by the recently announced Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) working group, the ETA Board and guidance from organisations such as Pride In Touch   .

We also want to be transparent with our community and recognise that while we do not currently have a published transgender policy, at the time of writing, the ETA Board and EDI working group have made its completion a priority and we are committed to publishing our transgender policy on or before May 1st, 2021.

The policy, that is in the latter stages of development, is designed to provide clarity on transgender participation in Touch without introducing unnecessary barriers. In short, our leading principle will state that an individual can participate in the category which best reflects their chosen gender identity.

We will use our relationships with fellow National Touch Associations and the Federation of International Touch to ensure that transgender inclusion is promoted through similar policies and guidelines across the sport.

As always, we encourage anyone to reach out to us if they have any questions or want to discuss this topic by contacting edi@englandtouch.org.uk.

We welcome the Touch community to join us in celebrating International Transgender Day of Visibility 2021.

Reference:

  1. Menzel, T., Braumüller, B. & Hartmann-Tews, I. (2019). The relevance of sexual orientation and gender identity in sport in Europe. Findings from the Outsport survey. Cologne: German Sport University Cologne, Institute of Sociology and Gender Studies. https://outonthefields.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/OUTSPORT-RESEARCH-Report-EU-Relevance-of-SOGI-in-Sport-in-Europe.pdf

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