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Judge orders West Virginia to allow transgender girl to join girls cross-country team

A federal judge ordered the state of West Virginia to allow a transgender girl to participate in school sports as a girl, saying that the state’s trans sports ban is a result of a “fear of the unknown and discomfort with the unfamiliar” in his decision.

“I am excited to know that I will be able to try out for the girls’ cross-country team and follow in the running shoes of my family,” sixth-grader Becky Pepper-Jackson said in a statement.

Related: Biden administration tells court that states can’t ban trans girls from sports

Pepper-Jackson sued her state last month with help from the ACLU after she tried to join her school’s girls cross-country team but was told that she couldn’t because she’s trans.

The school said that they couldn’t let her join the girls team because of H.B. 3293, which West Virginia passed earlier this year. The law bans trans girls from participating in school sports as their gender, effectively barring them from school sports. Her school’s principal even said it would be “confusing” for her to participate in the boys cross-country team because she’s a girl.

Her lawsuit alleges that H.B. 3293 violates her constitutional right to equal protection under […]

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