ACLU files suit against Ind. school district over football discrimination

Girl told she can't try out for team

INDIANAPOLIS - Keeping girls from trying out for football solely based on their sex is unconstitutional, according to a federal lawsuit filed Wednesday against an Indiana school corporation.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed the suit against Eastern Pulaski Community School Corporation on behalf of a seventh grade girl who was told she couldn't join the school's football team.

Read: ACLU's complaint

The girl and her father, Joseph Button, asked the principal and athletic director at Winamac Community Middle School if she could try out for the team, but they were told it wasn't allowed, the ACLU said.

According to the suit, the principal and athletic director suggested that the girl go out for volleyball or cross country instead.

The ACLU's suit argues the school violated the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution's Fourteen Amendment, because the decision to exclude the girl was based solely on her sex.

"The ACLU of Indiana works to secure gender equality and ensure that all women and girls are able to lead lives of dignity, free from discrimination based on gender," Jane Henegar, ACLU of Indiana executive director, said in a news release Thursday.

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