A North Carolina volleyball player who sustained serious injuries when a trans woman hit the ball with a ball and hit it in the face is urging the legislature to pass a bill banning cross-born males from participating in women’s sports competitions.
Payton McNab of Cherokee County, North Carolina, who said she suffered a concussion and neck injury, among other injuries, said at a hearing Tuesday that lawmakers need to prevent others like her from getting hurt.
The bill, HB 574 – Equity in Women’s Sports Act, passed the House on Wednesday, and was approved by the Senate in its first reading on Thursday. It has now been referred to a Senate committee for further study.
Accompanied by swimmer and activist Riley Gaines at the hearing, McNabb said: “Allowing biological males to compete against biological females is dangerous.
“I may be the first to get ahead of you with injury, but if it doesn’t pass, I won’t be the last.”
Peyton McNabb was pictured Tuesday speaking at the North Carolina Legislative Building
McNabb, left, is seen lying on the ground after being knocked unconscious
Gaines tweeted footage of McNabb’s incident, which occurred on November 1, 2022, during the Hiwase High School volleyball game against Highlands High School.
A transgender opponent from Highlands High School hit the ball, knocking McNabb unconscious.
“I was badly injured in a high school volleyball game by a transgender athlete on the opposing team,” McNab said Tuesday.
I suffered a concussion and a neck injury from which I am still recovering to this day.
Other injuries I still suffer from today include poor eyesight, partial paralysis on my right side, constant headaches, as well as anxiety and depression.
“I didn’t get to play the rest of my last volleyball season, and even though I currently play softball, I know I’m not doing as well as I did in the past, due to my injury.”
Her academic performance has suffered, she said, and she now needs “accommodations at school for testing”.
She said she was not able to “learn, retain and understand” as before.
“I could go on and on about how this affected my life,” McNab said.
But I’m not here for that. I’m not here for me.
“Because I know my playing time is about to end.
“I’m here for every biological athlete behind me.”
McNabb pointed to a North Carolina law that prohibits discrimination and says everyone should be allowed to compete fairly on a level playing field.
“It took away my ability to compete,” said McNab.
“Having to compete against biological males is not a level playing field.”
The bill, which is likely to pass, would prevent biological female athletes from being forced to compete against male transgender athletes in all-female school sports.
It will not prevent transgender athletes from participating in mixed teams or assigned to have biological sex at birth.
McNab (left) with swimmer Riley Gaines (right) and Rep. Jennifer Balcom (center), a Henderson County Republican and primary sponsor of HB 574
So far this year, 20 states have passed legislation protecting the rights of female athletes from what supporters say is an unfair competitive advantage for male transgender athletes.
Opponents of the bill from the Equality NC activist group addressed Tuesday’s hearing urging politicians to reject the bill saying it bars transgender athletes from competing.
They warned that activist protest, along the lines of the state’s HB 2 “bathroom bill,” could ensue.
North Carolina was at the forefront of a transgender pigeon battle in March 2016.
A nationwide backlash ensued, as Adidas, PayPal, Deutsche Bank, and others reconsidered their planned expansion into North Carolina, and TV and movie studios changed their minds about filming in the state.
Musicians Nick Jonas, Bruce Springsteen and Demi Lovato have announced their boycotts, while other artists, including Selena Gomez and Mumford & Sons, have donated a portion of local ticket sales to LGBTQ organizations.
The sports world has responded, too: The NBA moved the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte to New Orleans, and the NCAA moved the March Madness basketball tournament rounds out of state.
A 2017 Associated Press analysis predicted that North Carolina would lose more than $3.76 billion and nearly 3,000 jobs over the next 10 years as a direct result of HB 2.