LHSAA Policy Challenged As Discriminatory BY ACLU
How many of you woke up this morning thinking " Gee, I wish there was a way we could get more politics into high school sports"? Nobody? Well, that's too bad because if you had wished that then your wish would have come true. The American Civil Liberties Union has a bone to pick with the LHSAA. It has to do with the high school sports governing body's policy regarding social security cards.
The Louisiana High School Athletics Association requires student-athletes to provide social security numbers. While that might not seem like such a big deal on the surface. It kind of really is since many students don't have a Social Security Card. Or if they're like me, they have no idea where the original card happens to be at the present moment.
To be fair, the LHSAA does have this provision in their online handbook,
each student shall include the correct date of birth and last four digits of the student’s social security number.
So the policy isn't a new one, it's just being enforced. Officially, January 22nd of 2019 is when the LHSAA plans to remove any gray area from the policy with full enforcement. It's the enforcement of the policy that was the catalyst for the ACLU step in on behalf of some student-athletes.
This show-me-your papers policy is a cruel and unconstitutional approach to what should be a fun, inclusive, and enriching activity—and a betrayal of what high school sports should be all about.
Those comments belong to Alanah Odoms Hebert, the Executive Director for the ACLU of Louisiana. Hebert's comments were featured in a story on NOLA.com by reporter Maria Clark.
Several New Orleans area schools are suggesting that the enforcement of the LHSAA Social Security Number policy could decimate their teams. Apparently, many of the players on those teams come from families whose immigration status is not totally clear. It's obviously clear enough for them to be enrolled in public school but not clear enough to play sports for that school.
The LHSAA has not responded to the correspondence from the ACLU.