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Jazz Release Statement After Lawmakers Override Governor’s Veto on Transgender Bill

Earlier on Friday, Utah lawmakers voted to override Governor Stephen Cox’s veto of a legislation that would ban transgender athletes from competing on girls youth teams. 

With the decision, which is scheduled to take effect in July, Utah became the 12th state to enact legislation limiting or banning transgender participation in youth sports.

In response to the decision, the Jazz released a statement against the legislation.

“The Utah Jazz oppose discriminatory legislation. We are committed to our values of inclusivity, mutual respect, and fair play. Beyond basketball, we hope for an equitable solution that shows love and compassion for our youth.”

Utah is scheduled to host the NBA’s All-Star game in 2023, and as ESPN’s Malika Andrews pointed out, the league has precedent for pulling an All-Star game from a city for political reasons. The league pulled the All-Star game from Charlotte in ’17 when North Carolina passed a bill banning transgender people from using bathrooms of their preferred gender identity.

Cox, Utah’s republican governor, officially vetoed the legislation on Wednesday, and was confident the bill wouldn’t pass.

He explained in his veto letter that, of all the youth sports participants in Utah, this bill would only impact four transgender children. Cox also mentioned high trans suicide rates as a reason to oppose the legislation.

Cox is the second republican governor to veto this kind of legislation, joining Indiana Governor Eric HolcombArizona and Oklahoma are also waiting for their governor’s decision on legislation to ban transgender participation in sports.

Former NBA All-Star Dwyane Wade is one of Utah’s minority owners, and he has a personal connection to this legislation. Wade’s daughter is transgender, and both Wade and his wife, Gabrielle Union, have openly supported their daughter’s identity.

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