Moving the Goal Post Summit

International Summit Tackling Transphobia and Homophobia in Sport

Tuesday, August 16
8 am - 4:30 pm
Fauteux Hall, University of Ottawa


Join us in-person or online to learn, discuss, and develop strategies to meaningfully drive change to the exclusion and 2SLGBTQ+ discrimination in sport. We urgently need 2SLGBTQ+ adults and allies to begin standing up and defending children who are being harmed.

PART 1 - Banning transgender children and adults from sports: A public health and human rights crisis

The day will begin with a focus on helping you understand the evidence of serious harm caused by World Rugby’s ban of trans women and girls. The sessions will equip you with the knowledge and statistical data needed to explain why the policy has created a public health and human rights crisis.  

Public health agencies consistently find trans children and teenagers experience poorer health than their peers across all indicators. If these young people could play sport in a safe and supportive environment this could provide them with many much-needed health and psychosocial benefits.

World Rugby has said it does not believe a ban is a good outcome. The day will conclude with collaborative strategy development session focused on securing a timeline from World Rugby for developing a policy that is based on actual data from trans athletes and consultation with those directly impacted: women.  

  • Time



  • 8:30 – 8:55
    Pre-event coffee networking
  • 8:55 – 9:00
    Welcome from Bingham Cup Ottawa 2022 President
  • 9:00 - 9:05
    Opening remarks: Mr. Justice Russell Brown, Supreme Court of Canada
  • 9:05 – 9:10
    Opening remarks: Trans and Gender Diverse Athlete - Gold Medal Olympian (Rugby)
  • 9:10 – 9:15
    Opening remarks: Rugby Canada
  • 9:15 – 9:20
    Video: The Human Carnage from banning transgender athletes
    Australian Sports Commission
  • 9:20 - 9:40
    The Importance of Sport for Trans and 2SLGBTQ+ Children
    Overview of research on the size of the trans and gender diverse community, data on the mental and physical health of trans children and the broader 2SLGBTQ+ community, the benefits of sport, and research on the harm caused from blanket bans of trans children and adults from sport.
    Shannon Herrick (McGill University) and George Cunningham (University of Florida)
  • 9:40 – 9:45
    The perspectives of women who play rugby: video montage
  • 9:45 – 10:05
    Findings from Research with women’s rugby players in three countries - Do women support blanket bans?
    Elizabeth Saewyc (University of British Columbia) and Richard Pringle (Monash University)
  • 10:05– 10:20
    Who drove World Rugby’s trans ban? Was it women? – Results of a peer-reviewed academic investigation.
    Ali Greey (University of Toronto) and Erik Denison (Monash University)
  • 10:20 – 10:45
    Coffee break
  • 10:45 - 11:30
    Perspectives from the Pitch: A conversation with trans rugby players from Canada, Europe, USA, and Australia
    This panel is designed to provide you with insights and the understanding needed to have meaningful conversations with others about the true impact of World Rugby's policy in your local community.
  • 11:30 - 12:15
    Community Under Siege - The role of allies in driving change from within
    Advocacy experts share experience and their wisdom on winning approaches to effect meaningful and long-lasting policy change.

    Advocacy experts share experience and their wisdom on winning approaches to effect meaningful and long-lasting policy change: Helen Lenskyj (Pioneer of women's sport research/University of Toronto); Benoit Girardin (Sport Law/University of Ottawa), Sandra Kirby OC (Olympian, IOC Advisor),
  • 12:15 – 1:15
    Working Lunch (in-person only)- Back to the Drawing Board
    World Rugby says is believes a blanket ban is not a good outcome. This session will focus on developing an action plan to secure a binding commitment and timeline from World Rugby to develop a policy that is:
    • Based on existing data from trans women and girls who play rugby;
    • Consultation with those directly impacted: women.

PART 2 – Using science to drive meaningful change to homophobic, transphobic, and sexist behaviours in your rugby community

The second part of the day will expand the focus to include the entire 2SLGBTQI+ community.

Learn about the results of scientific research supported by IGR clubs, including the Sydney Convicts, Melbourne Chargers, Kings Cross Steelers, and Vancouver Rogues.

Discover effective, evidence-based approaches you can use in your community to drive meaningful change to harmful and exclusionary behaviours. Understand what works, and what does not, and how to win hearts and minds in your rugby community.  

  • Time



  • 1:15 – 1:35
    A day in a life of a rugby governing body executive - overcoming barriers to change.
    Senior leaders Paul Hunter (Rugby Canada), Neil Hay (Rugby Victoria – Australia), James Swanson (Harlequin FC - UK) share an insiders view and tips on how to work with them to drive change from within.
  • 1:35 - 1:50
    What actually works to drive meaningful change? Are education programs effective? What about pride games… just tokenism?
    Erik Denison (Monash University) shares the results of ongoing research supported by the Sydney Convicts, Kings Cross Steelers, Vancouver Rogues, Muddy York, Melbourne Chargers, and Brisbane Hustlers
  • 1:50 – 3:00
    Practical solutions you can implement in your community today to drive meaningful change
    Leaders of the rugby community share lessons from the frontlines and tips on ways you can drive meaningful change to 2SLGBTQ+ exclusion in your community - Matt Webb (England Rugby/Kings Cross Steelers), Andrew Purchas OAM (Pride in Sport/Sydney Convicts), LeeAnn Napiorkowski (Lanark Highlanders), Brennan Bastyovanszky (BC Rugby Board/Vancouver Rogues)
  • 3:00 – 3:15
  • 3:15 – 4:15
    What now? Strategy Time!
    Planning sessions (in-person only) to help you to set concrete steps for action when you go home. Connect with others who are passionate about ending harmful behaviours and who want to ensure every 2SLGBTQ+ child is able to play rugby and other sports in a safe and supportive environment.
  • 4:15 – 4:30
    Session wrap-up