An advocacy group for LGBTQ+ Oklahomans said a new law targeting transgender girls could result in many becoming isolated or depressed.
Gov. Kevin Stitt signed Senate Bill 2, also called the Save Women’s Sports Act into law Wednesday morning.
The law will prohibit transgender girls from competing in women sports in public schools of all levels.
Stitt said the change is meant to protect the integrity of women’s competition because of biological advantages for individuals born male.
“The reality is men are biologically different than women. Men have more muscle mass, their bones are larger and denser, they have larger lungs and wider airways. These are physical advantages men have over women…
“We’re ensuring a level playing field for female athletes,” Stitt said.
One advocacy group in Oklahoma criticized the bill following Stitt’s signing the bill, which became law immediately.
“The fact that trans kids have to be so conscious of what’s going on in our legislature is really sad,” said Alex Wade, the deputy director of Oklahomans For Equality, a Tulsa based nonprofit.
Wade said missing early childhood development activities, like sports, can lead to isolation and depression.
“A lot of trans kids end up hospitalized for depression, anxiety. And it’s not because they’re trans, it’s because of how people treat them because they’re trans.”
The Trevor Project is a national organization that specialized in LGBTQ+ research, advocacy and crisis intervention. It conducted a survey of that found 85% of trans and non-binary youth said state laws restricting transgender individuals negatively impacted their mental health.