Gov. Hutchinson signs GIRLS Act into law

Gov. Hutchinson signs GIRLS Act into law
A bill that would prohibit “members of the male sex” from participating in sports that are expressly designed for females was signed into law Thursday by Gov. Asa Hutchinson. (Source: ABC/NBC)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KAIT) - A bill that would prohibit “members of the male sex” from participating in sports that are expressly designed for females was signed into law Thursday by Gov. Asa Hutchinson.

Gov. Hutchinson signed SB450 - the Gender Integrity Reinforcement Legislation for Sports, or GIRLS, Act, according to the state legislative website.

The law would create the following teams for interscholastic, intercollegiate, intramural or club sports in the state - males, men or boys; females, women or girls; and coed or mixed.

Supporters have said the law would create specific parameters on sports participation in the state, while opponents have said the law would be discriminatory against transgendered athletes.

Also, the law would allow the Arkansas Attorney General to seek a legal cause of action against a “covered entity that knowingly violates” the law as well as directors, officers, agents and employees of the entity that knowingly violate the law.

The bill was approved 74-17 in the state House and 26-6 in the state Senate earlier in the session, which recessed early Wednesday.

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