Modification to PDGA Policy on Eligibility for Gender-Based Divisions for 2024 and 2025
As we wrote in our announcement of December 12, 2022, regarding the PDGA Policy on Eligibility for Gender-Based Divisions (“Policy”), we, the PDGA Global Board of Directors, value fairness and inclusion. Those values motivated our decision when formulating the Policy and will continue to guide us as we evaluate and update this policy as additional science and data become available. We stand by our decision to implement the Policy for the 2023 season.
Since that time, however, the patchwork of laws regarding transgender rights has only become more fragmented. The PDGA and Disc Golf Pro Tour (DGPT) have been named defendants in lawsuits over the application of the Policy in California and Minnesota, and judges in each state issued orders overriding the Policy. It has become apparent that the law is not settled on this issue.
The PDGA is not financially or logistically in a position to take the lead in multi-state litigation on this topic. For the first time in recent memory, the PDGA will end the year with a net operating loss, and it is not in the best interest of our members to continue to allocate resources to further litigation. Accordingly, and as part of a settlement ending the litigation against the PDGA and DGPT in both California and Minnesota, the Board of Directors is altering section C of the Policy by striking the following language:
Players who were assigned male gender at birth are eligible to compete in the gender-based FPO division at PDGA Pro Majors only if the criteria in C.3 is met:
Transition Prior to Puberty
The player began medical transition (for example, by taking puberty-suppressing medication) during Tanner Stage 2 or before age 12, whichever is later; and
The player continuously maintains a total testosterone level in serum below 2.0 nmol/L.
This change allows players who meet the requirements in either C.1 or C.2 of the Policy to participate in gender-based divisions at all PDGA-sanctioned events. The DGPT, under the terms of an explicit agreement to run an Elite Series tour, may continue to use any set or subset of C.1 or C.2 at their events.
This update goes into effect January 1, 2024, and will remain in effect through the 2024 and 2025 seasons. During that time, we will continue to evaluate the Policy and what future changes, if any, may be necessary to promote both fairness and inclusion while complying with applicable laws at the federal, state, or local levels, as well as with policy changes by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
We understand that our members have diverse thoughts, feelings, and opinions on this topic. The primary responsibility of the PDGA Global Board of Directors is to be good fiduciaries and stewards of disc golf world-wide. Because of that and the reasons stated above, we believe this is the correct decision for the sport at this time. As litigation on this issue draws to a close, we hope that our members on both sides of this issue can come together and focus their passion back on this sport we all love.
The PDGA Global Board of Directors
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