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This Rugby Player Isn't Allowed To Play On Her College Team Because She's Trans

"At some point, they need to look at us as humans."

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However, when her team began competing at tournaments, she was told that she wouldn’t be allowed to play.

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To understand Jean’s situation, it’s important to know that World Rugby is the sports governing body that ultimately decides whether or not Jean is allowed to play at the college level. World Rugby follows guidelines set by the International Olympic Committee.


According to Hudson Taylor, director of Athlete Ally, many sports governing bodies are hesitant to adopt trans-inclusive policies for two major reasons: Hormone levels and the contact nature of the sport.

However, other sports governing bodies, such as the NCAA, allow athletes like Jean who have maintained certain hormone levels to compete. World Rugby is one of the few that still requires surgery.


In 2016, the IOC temporarily updated its guidelines before the Rio Olympics and no longer required trans athletes to undergo surgery. However, these guidelines are still under review, and haven't been updated by World Rugby.

This means that World Rugby does not have clear guidelines that determine the eligibility of trans athletes to play on the team that corresponds with their gender identity, which ultimately makes it difficult for players like Jean to participate in college sports.

Fordham University declined to comment.


Jean will be assistant coaching the Fordham women's rugby team next season.