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Australian Olympics boss calls for transgender guidelines to be ‘addressed’

Article image for Australian Olympics boss calls for transgender guidelines to be ‘addressed’

The boss of the Australian Olympic Committee admits he sympathises with female athletes having to compete against transgender rivals at Tokyo 2020.

This year’s Olympic Games will see a record number of transgender athletes competing in weightlifting, volleyball, cycling, BMX and a host of other sports.

Three-time Australian Olympian Tamsyn Lewis has taken a strong stand against the issue, telling Ben Fordham it jeopardises the entire female category of sport.

Now, with six months to go until the Games, Australian Olympic Committee CEO Matt Carroll tells Ben Fordham transgender guidelines must be “addressed”.

“It is difficult. I have sympathy for female athletes competing in this space,” he says.

“This issue was going to be addressed. It hasn’t been addressed. It would be good if the IOC could because, I agree, the last time they were addressed was 2015.”

The AOC boss says it’s most likely too late for changes to be implemented for Tokyo but says the medical commission and the athletes’ commission should look at making changes after the Games.

Mr Carroll tells Ben, female and transgender athletes “shouldn’t be scared to have this discussion”.

“I don’t think it’s a discussion where anyone wants to discriminate… it is just exactly that, where everyone enters the race on a level playing field.”

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The biggest question right now remains, will Tokyo 2020 go ahead at all?

The coronavirus outbreak is threatening to postpone or even cancel the Olympic Games.

Mr Carroll tells ben they’re preparing as if everything is going ahead.

“The Games are certainly proceeding, the planning’s in full swing. We’re taken every precaution we can for our athletes.”



Aussie Olympian takes a stand against transgender athletes at Tokyo 2020

Image: AOC Chief Executive Matt Carroll (Getty/Hanna Lassen)