A Utah bill that bans transgender youth
from playing on sports teams that match their gender identity will
become law after lawmakers on Friday overrode Governor Spencer Cox's
In vetoing House Bill 11, Cox, a
Republican, said that the legislation was flawed and “should be
The House voted 56-18 in favor of the
override, while the Senate voted 21-8. Two Republicans in the House
and two in the Senate voted against an override.
House Bill 11 prohibits “a student of
the male sex from competing against another school on a team
designated for female students.” The legislation defines “sex”
as being determined “at birth.”
Cox was the second Republican governor
Governor Eric Holcomb this month to reject such legislation.
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the
nation's largest LGBTQ rights advocate, criticized the override vote.
“The Utah legislature shows no
shame,” said HRC State Legislative Director and Senior Counsel
Cathryn Oakley. “Despite opposition from their own governor, Utah
legislators continue to attack transgender children. Further, the
state is opening itself up to legal challenges, as have followed
similar laws in other states. The Utah legislature should focus on
the real issues impacting Utahns, not needlessly attack a handful of
vulnerable children who pose no threat and just want to play sports
with their friends.”
“We sincerely thank Gov. Cox for
seeing the humanity of transgender youth and speaking out against
this discriminatory legislation. The Human Rights Campaign condemns
this action by the Utah legislature and will continue to use every
tool at our disposal to fight for the rights all transgender youth
and their families,” Oakley added.
The bill is expected to take effect on