Student-athlete uniform modesty bill advances

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By Andrew Hensel | The Center Square

(The Center Square) – A new bill in Springfield would allow student-athletes to make their athletic uniforms more modest for religious or cultural reasons.

State Rep. Will Guzzardi’s House Bill 120 would amend the School Code to give the governing boards of each school district the ability to allow sports uniform modifications for modesty for religious and cultural reasons.

This bill would allow student-athletes to consult with their school board rather than having to file a complaint with the Illinois High School Association, which governs most interscholastic sports in the state.

State Sen. Laura Murphy, D-Des Plaines, said the bill would make it easier for students to make changes to their uniforms.

“A lot of people felt they had a mechanism to address the issue because they would petition to the IHSA, but now this will save time and the school board can make the decisions,” she said.

Safety will always be first when talking sports or uniforms and Illinois Athletic Officials Advisory Committee member Mike Skarbis said that from an official’s perspective, the modifications “will not affect player safety or hinder the officials’ ability to do their jobs”

The bill sits with the Senate and has gained 22 co-sponsors since Guzzardi introduced it in January.

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