Lots of commotion has been stirred up in the BJJ community, after a recent NAGA tournament allowed for a transgender athlete to compete in a female division.
A part of the Jiu-Jitsu community is against allowing such instances from taking place in martial arts, simply due to physical differences between males and females.
And, well, Jiu-Jitsu main organization, the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu federation is on the same boat.
The BJJ community worldwide has been widely discussing recent NAGA’s decision to allow a transgender person to compete in a female division at one of their events.
So, NAGA decided to release their official policy for transgender females who want to take part in competition.
We’re delivering it in full below:
- Introduction and Consent:
Upon arrival at the event, transgender female competitors shall be introduced to the biological females within their designated division. This introduction is crucial to allow the other competitors an opportunity to make an informed decision about competing alongside the transgender female.
- Mutual Agreement:
We will ask the biological females if they are comfortable participating in matches against the transgender female. If all participants within the weight class/skill level agree, the division will proceed with all competitors included.
- Preferred Competition:
Should any biological females decline to compete against the transgender female, they will be given the option to compete in their regular division, without the participation of the transgender female.
- Optional Second Division:
For those who chose not to compete with the transgender female, we will inquire if they have an interest in entering a separate division which includes the transgender female. This additional division will be offered at no cost to those competitors. However, if individuals decline this opportunity, the transgender female will be directed to compete with the males in their respective weight and skill level category.
- Agreement Confirmation:
If any discomfort or objections arise during the tournament, we will pause all matches within the division in question. We will then reiterate the policy and seek consent from all participants before proceeding with matches.
- Identification Challenges:
We ask that transgender competitors contact NAGA via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) prior to the tournament in which they are competing so we can go through this policy with them. NAGA has been informed about the presence of transgender females in advance by instructors/competitors who are in the same division. If identification occurs after matches have started, we will halt the division and follow the aforementioned process before resuming matches.
- Refund Option:
If the biological female refuses to compete with the transgender female, and have no other biological women to compete against, they will be given a full refund. If the transgender female has no biological women to compete against, and refuses to compete with the men at their weight/skill level, they will be given a full refund.
In the end, NAGA emphasizes:
This policy aims to strike a balance between accommodating the needs of transgender athletes and respecting the preferences of all participants in ensuring fair and inclusive competition at NAGA events.