Lawsuit Pushes Athletic Association to Level Playing Field for Female Baseball Players

Feb 27, 2009

The Executive Committee of the Indiana High School Athletic Association (IHSAA) has adopted an emergency rule permitting girls to try out for their high school baseball teams.
The decision was made three months after a 14-year-old Indiana girl, Logan Young, sued the IHSAA and the Monroe County Community School Corporation (MCCSC) for allegedly discriminating against her in violation of Title IX by not allowing her to try out for and play for her high school’s baseball team.
Young, a freshman at Bloomington High School South and avid baseball player, had expected to able try out for her school’s baseball team last year. The IHSAA, however, had promulgated a rule, enforced by MCCSC, that prohibited her from trying out for her high school’s freshman baseball team because of her gender.
In the complaint, Young alleged that “deprived of an opportunity to participate in high school baseball that is given to similarly situated boys, Logan will be irreparably harmed by losing the chance to play baseball with her peers and to develop skills to enable her to progress to the next level of baseball; Logan will be irreparably harmed by being denied other tangible and intangible benefits of baseball participation made available to similarly situated boys. Having an opportunity to play softball will not adequately compensate Logan for losing the opportunity to play baseball, and will place her at a substantial disadvantage compared to her peers who played baseball.”
After the recent decision, Marie-Elisabeth Young, Logan’s mother, said she was “pleased that the IHSAA has decided to do the right thing and let these girls try out for their baseball teams, We’re proud of Logan for fighting this rule so that no other girl in Indiana has to go through what she went through just to get the opportunity to play the sport that she loves.”
Young was represented by lead counsel Sharon McKee of Hangley, Aronchick, Segal & Pudlin in Philadelphia, PA; Tae Sture of Sture Legal Services in Fishers, Indiana; and Public Justice’s Staff Attorney Victoria Ni and Goldberg, Waters & Kraus Fellow Amy Radon.


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