The World Athletics Council announced it has voted to ban male-to-female transgender athletes from all female World Rankings competition. On Thursday, the council announced decisions on transgender athletes and regulations for DSD athletes. Under the updated guidelines, male-to-female transgender athletes who went through male puberty will not be allowed to compete in any events.
The council noted that there are currently no transgender athletes in international competition, and therefore, there is no "athletics-specific evidence of the impact these athletes would have on the fairness of female competition in athletics."
That being the case, the World Athletics Council said it chose to "[prioritize] fairness and the integrity of the female competition before inclusion."
The council said it will put together a Working Group that includes a transgender athlete to reconsider this decision over the next 12 months.
World Athletics president Sebastian Coe released a statement on the council's decision to bar transgender athletes from female competition.
"Decisions are always difficult when they involve conflicting needs and rights between different groups, but we continue to take the view that we must maintain fairness for female athletes above all other considerations," Coe said. "We will be guided in this by the science around physical performance and male advantage which will inevitably develop over the coming years. As more evidence becomes available, we will review our position, but we believe the integrity of the female category in athletics is paramount."
When it comes to the eligibility of DSD athletes, the council has created stricter testosterone limits. In order for DSD athletes to compete in events, they must reduce their testosterone levels below 2.5 nmol/L for at least 24 months. That number is half of the previous requirement (5.0 nmol/L).
For DSD athletes already in competition, there will be "interim provisions." Those provisions will require any relevant athletes to reduce their testosterone below 2.5 nmol/L for a period of six months.
The ban on transgender athletes and the new regulations for DSD athletes will take effect on March 31. That means they will affect the 2023 World Championships in Budapest and the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.