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9th Circuit Court of Appeals hears Idaho transgender youth athletes ban

The case is seen as a test for the constitutionality of this type of ban

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Lindsay Hecox, one of the plaintiffs in Hecox v Little case (Photo Credit: ACLU)

SAN FRANCISCO – A three judge panel of the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments Monday in the case over the Idaho ban of transgender female athletes in girls’ and women’s school sports.

The case was brought by the ACLU of Idaho in the Spring of 2020 after Republican state lawmakers passed HB 500, which was signed into law by Republican Governor Brad Little, making Idaho the first state to impose an outright ban on participation of transgender athletes in sports.

The Judges, according to Keith Ridler of The Associated Press, seemed for a time focused on whether the case remained relevant because one of the plaintiffs, Lindsay Hecox, had dropped out of Boise State University after failing to qualify for the women’s cross-country team. An attorney representing her said she planned to return in the fall and try out for the team again.

Judges also questioned whether the other plaintiff, who was born a biological girl and feared invasive tests contained in the Idaho law to prove her gender, had standing to sue.

The case is seen as a test for the constitutionality of this type of ban, which could have far-ranging effects, as the onslaught of anti-Trans youth sports bills from other states across the nation in the 2021 legislative term has followed Idaho’s being the first law in the nation banning transgender women and girls from playing on women’s sports teams.

Anti-Trans groups including far right advocacy groups say such laws are needed because transgender female athletes have physical advantages. The ACLU and LGBTQ advocacy groups maintain that the law is discriminatory and, in Idaho, an invasion of privacy because of the tests required should an athlete’s gender be challenged.

A similar measure in Florida was just passed last week in a brokered deal which removed the stipulation for a ‘genitalia and birth sex determination’ by Republican lawmakers although the state’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis has not yet signed the measure.

Other states, including Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee and South Dakota, have signed into law bans on transgender women athletes participating in women’s school sports. Opponents say bans would further stigmatize transgender students and spread misinformation about the community while supporters say the laws “are needed to keep the playing field fair for cisgender girls.”

“When the law does not recognize differences between men and women, we’ve seen that women lose,” said Christiana Holcomb, an attorney for the Alliance Defending Freedom, which supports the ban on trans athletes popping up across the U.S., according to The Associated Press.

West Virginia’s Republican Governor Jim Justice last week on Wednesday signed HB 3293, a bill that bans transgender youth athletes from competing in women sports in the state’s middle, high schools and colleges.

An Amicus Brief was filed by The National Women’s Law Center and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and 60 additional organizations committed to racial and gender justice and LGBTQ rights. including the Human Rights Campaign, Gender Justice, GLSEN, Equality California and Public Justice:

“Amici have a shared interest in ensuring that protections against sex discrimination include protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and in protecting women and girls of color from race- and sex-discrimination.

The brief sets forth amici’s considered understanding of the harmful effects H.B. 500 will have on all women and girls if it is allowed to go into effect. In short, H.B. 500 will harm women and girls who are transgender, women and girls who are intersex and cisgender, and Black and brown women and girls.

H.B. 500 will also cause schools to violate federal civil rights protections contained in Title IX. And, contrary to the assertions of some amici supporting H.B. 500, protecting transgender women and girl student athletes does not violate Title IX.

Although Appellants incorrectly portray H.B. 500 as benefiting women and girls, many women’s rights and gender justice organizations have advocated for full gender equity in schools including equal access to participation in athletics for 2 women and girls who are transgender.”

The vitriol has been ugly and harsh over these laws, but particularly this law as it could decide the constitutionality of all similar pieces of legislation. On Monday that ugliness was amplified by one anti-Trans group on Twitter which has led the fight.

That group, known as Save Women’s Sports @SaveWomensSport, attacked the lead ACLU attorney in the case, misgendering him and denigrating him.

Also occurring Monday in a related matter, Democratic Kansas Governor Laura Kelly’s veto of a bill two weeks ago that would have banned participation of Trans youth athletes in Kansas high school and colleges in girls’ and women’s sports will stand.

Republican lawmakers were unable to muster the support needed to over turn the Governor’s action, in a 26-14 vote leaving backers of the measure one short of the necessary two-thirds majority and blocking an attempt in the House, the Associated Press reported.

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Community Services - PSA

LA County Parks after Dark program celebrates 50th anniversary of Title IX

Parks & Rec offers sport opportunities for girls in flag football, soccer, softball, basketball, lacrosse, cheerleading and volleyball

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Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES – On Thursday, June 23, 2022, 34 participating Parks After Dark (PAD) parks will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Title IX with a highly anticipated girls’ sports clinic and showcase starting at 6:00 p.m.

More than 1,800 girls, ages 5 to 18 will have the opportunity to learn skills and techniques from various sports such as soccer, lacrosse, softball, basketball and cheerleading. Sports will vary at each park.

In 1972, Title IX, the civil rights legislation that prohibits sex-based discrimination in any school or any other college sports was passed into law to provide equal opportunity, scholarships and participation for girls in sports. In 2022, the department of Parks and Recreation is striving to offer girls sports County-wide to support the vision of Title IX and aiming for gender equity across all sports programs.

“The department’s goal is to provide a safe space dedicated for girls to play, increase opportunities for women coaches and administrators and to provide a positive experience while participating in sports,” says Regina Bradley, LA County Parks and Recreation Sports Manager.

The department currently offers sport opportunities for girls in flag football, soccer, softball, basketball, lacrosse, cheerleading and volleyball.

Parks After Dark is an award-winning program designed to bring communities together by filling park spaces with family-centered activities that transform local parks into summer safe havens. This summer’s program lineup will feature an array of girls’ sports programs to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Title IX, which paved the way to gender equity for girl’s participation in sports.

The L.A. County Parks after Dark program is possible thanks to the generosity of the L.A. County Board of Supervisors – First District Supervisor Hilda L. Solis, Second District Supervisor and Board Chair Holly J. Mitchell, Third District Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, Fourth District Supervisor Janice Hahn and Fifth District Supervisor Kathryn Barger – L.A. County Chief Executive Office, L.A. County Department of Public Social Services, L.A. County Probation Department and many community-based organizations throughout L.A. County.

“Now more than ever, L.A. County families need park spaces to heal from the trauma brought on by COVID-19 combined with the financial stress many people are facing,” L.A. County Parks Executive Director Norma Edith García-González said. “Parks after Dark eliminates barriers to recreational opportunities and introduces families to no cost enriching experiences that promote mental and physical health through fun and games.”

Parks After Dark, launched in 2010, has proven to be a successful prevention and intervention program that provides multiple benefits to vulnerable communities,decreasing violence and crime, and increasing social cohesion and community well-being. In 2018, Parks After Dark was recognized by the National Recreation and Park Association, which presented L.A. County Parks and Recreation with its Best in Innovation award.

For more information on Parks After Dark, visit https://parks.lacounty.gov/PAD.

All PAD parks will host programs on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights from 6:00-10:00PM between June 16th and August 6th:

Jackie Robinson Park – 8773 E. Avenue R, Littlerock

Stephen Sorenson Park – 16801 E. Avenue P, Lake Los Angeles

George Lane Park – 5520 W. Ave L-8, Quartz Hill

Val Verde Community Regional Park – 30300 W. Arlington Rd., Val Verde

El Cariso Community Regional Park – 13100 Hubbard St., Sylmar

Loma Alta Park – 3330 N. Lincoln Ave., Altadena

Pamela County Park – 2236 Goodall Ave., Duarte

Valleydale Park – 5525 N. Lark Ellen Ave., Azusa

Charter Oak Park – 20261 E. Covina Blvd., Covina

San Angelo Park – 245 S. San Angelo Ave., La Puente

Bassett Park – 510 N. Vineland Ave., La Puente

Allen J. Martin Park – 14830 E. Giordano St., La Puente

Rimgrove Park – 747 N. Rimgrove Dr., La Puente

William Steinmetz Park – 1545 S, Stimson Ave., Hacienda Heights

Amigo Park – 5700 S. Juarez Ave., Whittier

Sorenson Park – 11419 Rose Hedge Dr., Whittier

Adventure Park – 10130 S. Gunn Ave., Whittier

Amelia Mayberry Park – 13201 E. Meyer Rd., Whittier

City Terrace Park – 1126 N. Hazard Ave., East Los Angeles

Eugene A. Obregon Park – 4021 E. First St., Los Angeles

Belvedere Community Regional Park – 4914 E. Cesar Chavez Ave., Los Angeles

Ruben Salazar Park – 3864 Whittier Blvd., Los Angeles

Saybrook Park – 6250 E. Northside Dr., East Los Angeles

East Rancho Dominguez Park – 15116 S. Atlantic Ave., Compton

Mona Park – 2291 E. 121st St., Compton

Athens Park – 12603 S. Broadway, Los Angeles

Mary M. Bethune Park – 1244 E. 61st St., Los Angeles

Earvin “Magic” Johnson Park – 905 E. El Segundo Blvd, Los Angeles

Helen Keller Park – 12521 S. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles

Jesse Owens Community Regional Park – 9651 S. Western Ave., Los Angeles

Franklin D. Roosevelt Park – 7600 Graham Ave., Los Angeles

Ted Watkins Memorial Park – 1335 E. 103rd St., Los Angeles

Col. Leon H. Washington Park – 8908 S. Maie Ave., Los Angeles

George Washington Carver Park – 1400 E. 118th St., Los Angeles

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Community Services - PSA

LA County Parks & Rec invites folks to Juneteenth at Jackie Robinson Park

FREE Performances, Guest Speaker Series, Games, Art Displays, Car Exhibits and So Much More this Saturday!

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Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES – It’s Park Time L.A. County! LA County Parks and Recreation invites you to our Juneteenth celebration, on Saturday, June 18th from 10am to 10pm at Jackie Robinson Park (8773 E Avenue R Sun Village).

Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of enslaved people in the United States; specifically, when former slaves were finally freed in Galveston, Texas, two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Though long celebrated within the Black community, Juneteenth was formally made a federal holiday on June 17th, 2021.

The L.A. County Juneteenth Celebrations are possible thanks to the generosity of the L.A. County Board of Supervisors – First District Supervisor Hilda L. Solis, Second District Supervisor and Board Chair Holly J. Mitchell, Third District Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, and Fifth District Supervisor Kathryn Barger – and many community-based organizations throughout L.A. County.

Juneteenth at Jackie Robinson is hosted in partnership with local community organizations. This year’s activities include musical performances, speaker’s series, wellness activities, resource fairs, artist experiences, hands-on children’s activities, video game trucks and so much more.

For more information on Juneteenth celebrations, contact Delmy Villegas-Delgado, Recreation Manager at (626) 369-5141 or at [email protected]

Juneteenth at Jackie Robison is a FREE events with no registration required. Food available onsite at cost by local businesses and vendors.

Please join us at the following parks and celebrate Juneteenth with us this Saturday:

Jackie Robinson Park – 8773 E Avenue R Sun Village from 10 am to 10 pm

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Community Services - PSA

Los Angeles County Parks & Recreation launches summer aquatics

Summer aquatics registration opens up Saturday, June 18 and programs start Monday, June 20, 2022- visit parks.lacounty.gov/aquatics

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Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES – It’s Park Time L.A.! Beat the heat, get fit or learn to swim at L.A. County seasonal and year-round pools. There’s something for everyone including lap swim, novice teams, aqua aerobics too! Free Every Body Swims and other summer aquatics programs run from June 20 to August 20.

Register at reservations.lacounty.gov starting June 18. 

L.A. County’s five year-round pools operate Monday through Saturday from 6 am to 7 pm. The County’s twenty-three seasonal pools operate on two rotating schedules from 11 am to 7 pm. Pools on schedule 1 operate Monday, Wednesday and Friday and pools on schedule 2 operate Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

For more information on swim programs, visit parks.lacounty.gov/aquatics.

L.A. County’s Summer Aquatics programs are possible thanks to the generous support of the L.A. County Board of Supervisor First District Supervisor Hilda L. Solis for her support in funding programming at Belvedere Pool, as well as the American Red Cross and LA84 Foundation for supporting scholarships. Visit your local pool to learn about more information on scholarships. 

Looking for more places to cool off in the evening? Attend evening swim at one of our 18 Parks After Dark (PAD) locations from 6 to 7:30 pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Find a PAD swim site by visiting parks.lacounty.gov/pad.   

L.A. County also has 18 splash pads to cool off in that operate from 10 am to 7 pm Monday through Sunday through September 30.

To find a splash pad near you, visit parks.lacounty.gov/aquatics

For more information on L.A. County’s aquatics programs, contact:

 [email protected]

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