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Last week, USA Powerlifting (USAPL) announced that transgender women would not be allowed to compete against biological females. The decision gained mainstream attention when JayCee Cooper, a trans female powerlifter, brought notice to the fact that the USAPL rejected her application to compete in the women’s division in a Minnesota-based meet. Then, Minnesota State Rep, Ilhan Omar (D), who wrote a letter to the USAPL, asked them to adopt the rules of the International Olympic Committee, who allow trans women to compete against biological females.
It seems as though more and more lifters are siding with Cooper and Ilhan. This past weekend at the USAPL Minnesota State Championships (Feb. 16-17), competitors protested the USAPL’s trans policy by timing out all nine of their attempts (three each for the squat, deadlift, and bench press). Instead of participating or just not showing up, some lifters approached the platform and stood there as the clock counted down the minute. Many of the protestors, who donned green singlets, were members of Team Green—a well-established powerlifting team based out of The Movement Minneapolis Gym.
Some competitors took to Instagram to show their support, using the hastags like #sharetheplatform and #istandwithtranslifters. One woman held up a flag at the meet during her “attempts” that read “Trans Lifters Belong Here.”
The USPAL has yet to publish a response. We will continue to follow this story as it unfolds.
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While we were busy celebrating diversity and inclusion in sport yesterday at the @burleystrength novice comp, across the world others were still fighting for that right. Sport is for everyone. . #Repost @ashleyvse ・・・ I went 0/9 in my second powerlifting meet yesterday and I am not mad about it at all. My teammates, along with #teamgreen from @movementmn, chose to use our platform time to protest @usapowerlifting’s ban on trans lifters. We each stood on the platform running out our time (and disqualifying ourselves) in solidarity. Despite minimal boos and an announcer that flat out refused to say the names of anyone protesting, we were met with minimal resistance. We strongly encourage the USAPL to reconsider their position and follow the lead of the IOC and other strength-based sports that have well thought out trans-inclusive policies. Utilizing outdated, fear-based policies and rhetoric does nothing but reinforce harmful myths about trans people. Trans women ARE WOMEN. Period. We are members of this federation and we are here to make a change. Endless thanks to Anna White and all of the volunteers and judges. We appreciate you! And to my team @solcanafitness and friends at @movementmn, am so grateful to stand next to you in this fight. ?: @maxwellpoessnecker #usaplmnwomensstate #usaplmn #usapl #letthemlift #sharetheplatform #hereonpurpose #istandwithtransathletes #isupporttransathletes