Hannah Mouncey playing for the Darebin Falcons against NT Thunder at Preston City Oval. Picture: Nicole Garmston
Hannah Mouncey playing for the Darebin Falcons against NT Thunder at Preston City Oval. Picture: Nicole Garmston

AFL faces transgender fight in Human Rights Commission

TRANSGENDER footballer Hannah Mouncey says she will take her case to the Human Rights Commission if the AFL cannot quickly come up with a transgender footballer policy.

Mouncey is leading the goalkicking in the VFLW with Darebin but remains in limbo about her prospects of playing AFLW next year.

She has been told by the AFL that it might have a policy in place to judge her case by the end of September.

The AFLW draft is expected to be held in mid-October.

That might give her only a number of weeks to push her case with the AFL, which rejected her application to play last year.

She was given only days last year to push her case to the AFL, which then told her she could play VFLW but not in the second year of the AFLW.

Mouncey has told the AFL that if they do not have a policy in place by the end of July, she will take last year's AFL decision to the Human Rights Commission.

 

Hannah Mouncey fights for the ball in the VFLW. Picture: Nicole Garmston
Hannah Mouncey fights for the ball in the VFLW. Picture: Nicole Garmston

 

She would argue she was discriminated against by the AFL despite clearly being under the IOC regulations for testosterone levels in elite athletes.

"I have told them that if they don't have something by the end of July I will take it to the Human Rights Commission at the very least," she told the Herald Sun.

"I am happy to avoid that, but that's where it's at at this stage.

"They have had 12 months or more to work on it, but I have barely been able to get in touch with the AFL.

"I haven't really been able to get in touch with anyone since December."

The AFL's initial ruling was that handball star Mouncey was too strong to play AFLW football, but ruled she could play VFL.

She has had no safety issues with other players this season, kicking 12 goals in five games.

"The best estimate they can tell me is the policy might be in place by the end of September at best.

"In that case I don't know what I need to give them, I don't know what they will ask for so I can prove I should play.

"That is the stuff they need to take into account when they give me two weeks to sort something out. It just doesn't work."

The AFL has only just started working on formulating its own policy despite committing to a review in mid-February.

The league made its decision, taking into account "the stage of maturity of the AFL competition, its current playing cohort and Ms Mouncey's individual circumstances".

It used the policy "in accordance with the exception to discrimination" on the basis of gender identity under the Victorian Equal Opportunity Act.

The Australian Sports Commission and Australian Human Rights Commission are working on a trans framework which the AFL has said will help guide its policy.

Mouncey is one of the stakeholders consulting on the framework for the Human Rights Commission, but it is not known when that policy will be ready.

Mouncey has effectively put her life on hold, with clubs unsure whether they can recruit her for the third season of the AFLW.

She is buoyed by the support she has had from opposition players in recent weeks, who have supported her decision to play VFLW.

The safety concerns the AFL had about her in the AFLW have not materialised, Mouncey admitting she is far from the quickest player.

Mouncey had clubs interested in recruiting her last year but despite a booming kick and 190cm frame would be a solid AFLW player, not a star.



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