Keenly aware

This reads more like a letter from a hostage than a policy statement from a sporting institution.

IRFU Updates Transgender Policy

The IRFU will amend its gender participation policy for rugby from the forthcoming season, based on medical and scientific evidence and in line with World Rugby guidance.

The IRFU is keenly aware that this is a sensitive and challenging area for those involved and the wider LGBT+ community and will continue to work with those impacted, providing support to ensure their ongoing involvement with the game.

Ok? Ok? Ok? We’re keenly aware, we promise we are, so so so aware, we totally get how sensitive and challenging and agonizing and torturous and sensitive it is, have we grovelled enough yet?

When has any organization ever talked about women’s concerns in that anxious caring hand-holding way?

Recent peer reviewed research provides evidence that there are physical differences between those people whose sex was assigned as male and those as female at birth, and advantages in strength, stamina and physique brought about by male puberty are significant and retained even after testosterone suppression.

You don’t say. Recent peer reviewed research reiterates what everyone already knew, which was why women had separate sports in the first place. I mean yay research, but the default should have been the obvious all along.

Anne Marie Hughes, Spirit of Rugby Manager, who has worked on policy development in this area since 2014, said,

“The IRFU is committed to inclusivity and has worked with the players and other groups in the LGBT+ community to explain that this change is based solely on new research related to safety. This is a particularly sensitive area, and it is important that respect is shown to all members of our rugby family and the wider community.

“We will continue to work to be as inclusive as we can be and to explore areas such as tag and touch rugby, which we know some of our players are already considering, refereeing, volunteering, and coaching.

“We continue to stand with the LGBT+ community, and while we accept that today some may feel disappointed in this decision, we want to again underline to them – there is a place for everyone in rugby, and we can all work together.”

So much grovelling and apologizing and wringing of hands just because they’ve decided not to let men trample all over women in rugby matches.

Also there is no LGBT+ community. There’s an LGB community, up to a point (since women and men often have competing interests), but the T is a different thing altogether. The + is just stupid. (How can people sign up to the + when nobody knows what it is? We don’t have Feminism Etc because we would need to know what the etc stands for before agreeing to it; the same ought to go for the +.)

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