It is Transgender Awareness Week, and British Cycling has issued an update on its Transgender and Non-Binary Participation Policy, which was suspended in April this year. The policy review remains ongoing, however the new guidance published today gives some clarity to racers wishing to race events run under British Cycling eligibility rules, as well as reiterating inclusive messages to those outside the race scene.
The full guidance can be read here. The keys points relating to competitive events are:
- That no new Full Race Licences for transgender and non-binary athletes will be processed until the completion of the full policy review
- Full Race Licences already issued under previous rules remain valid
- Licences for events run under British Cycling regulations must be accepted at face value, and not questioned at or during at event.
- Any concerns about or objections to eligibility are to be raised via the British Cycling Compliance Team and not discussed publicly.
- The responsibility for checking eligibility sits with the athlete.
British Cycling competitive events
Event organisers, Commissaires and all participants should take a Licence and/or event entry at face value and all participants should respect the decision of the event officials.
If an event organiser, participant or volunteer has any concerns regarding another participant’s eligibility, this should be done after the event via the British Cycling Compliance team.
Where queries surrounding a participant’s eligibility are raised at the event or out of office hours, the participant should be permitted to race and following the event, the Compliance team can be contacted to check the participant’s eligibility. All volunteers and participants should ensure any communications regarding a participant’s eligibility are not shared at the event or otherwise.
Any queries from transgender and non-binary members about their Race Licence and eligibility to compete should be passed directly to the Compliance team who will conduct the necessary enquiries and respond directly to the relevant parties.
All participants should be able to use facilities which match their gender identity. If the venue can offer gender neutral or private changing facilities, then this would be encouraged as an option for participants.
Transgender and non-binary participants make a vital contribution to our sport and activities as volunteers, Commissaires and administrators, and these roles are not affected by the suspension of the Policy.
For events which do not require a British Cycling Race Licence, eligibility to compete will depend on the requirements of the relevant licensing body.
It is the participant’s responsibility to check that they are eligible to compete in an event upon entering. Any queries regarding this should be raised with the Compliance team who will be able to respond accordingly as soon as possible.British Cycling
In effect, this allows anyone with a current Full Race Licence to compete at British Cycling events. For those who have been issued licences under the old policy, this should provide both an opportunity to compete, and a degree of protection from hostility and discrimination during events.
This update also makes it clear that participatory events should be open to all, and that Breeze events (British Cycling initiative to get more women on bikes) are open to transgender and non-binary riders.
Transgender and non-binary participants are encouraged to participate in British Cycling community programmes and other recreational activities, including Breeze, Guided Rides and affiliated Club activities.British Cycling
However, the question of how licences will be issued in future remains unanswered for now, and any transgender and non-binary athletes hoping to apply to race face a wait until Spring 2023 to find out what the rules will be. Today’s British Cycling statement promises regular updates on progress – this is the first to be issued since the suspension of the policy in April this year.
Transgender Awareness Week
To mark Transgender Awareness Week, there are many resources being shared on what it means to be trans, and how to be an ally. If you are interested in learning more, it’s a great time to hit the internet. There is also an International Transgender Day of Remembrance on 20th November, an event which marks those who have died as a result of transphobic violence.
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