Gender Inclusivity

Quidditch is a trailblazer in the sporting world for inclusivity, played and followed by some of the most open-minded individuals in the world. QuidditchUK is committed to keeping this at the forefront of the sport as it develops, and we are dedicated to upholding both the terms and the spirit of Rule 7.1.3 (the ‘gender rule’ or ‘four-maximum rule’). All athletes in our league are valued equally and are equally encouraged to strive for the standards of diligence, dedication and competitive excellence which make quidditch players outstanding colleagues, teammates, and friends. Everyone at QuidditchUK is wholeheartedly committed to the reality of any individual, irrespective of gender identity, gender expression, sex, sexuality, race, ethnicity, national affiliations, political affiliations, religious denomination, religious upbringing, social standing, health, disability status, or physical appearance, being able to be an exemplary member of our community representing all of these values and virtues. We are actively opposed to anyone who makes any part of quidditch or QuidditchUK unsafe, uncomfortable, or unwelcoming for these or any other reasons.

In particular, QuidditchUK notes that sex, gender, sexuality, and identity are profoundly sensitive and personal issues. Peoples’ opinions and feelings in these areas will vary wildly and any coverage of these issues here should be considered no more than guidelines to or presentations of common understandings of ideas or terms. It is paramount to QuidditchUK that everyone in the community knows to approach all such areas with care and caution, and that any and all individuals’ personal reflections on these issues are respected at all times. This is especially true concerning an individual’s own identities; we strongly believe that an individual’s own conception of themselves, including sex, gender, sexuality, and identity, must be respected and cannot be incorrect with respect to their own identity. With this in mind, below are some useful guidelines and terms which may be useful as an introduction to this area of identity which is so important to many people.


Gender Spectrum


Views of gender only including male and female identifying people is referred to as the gender binary. However, it is more correct to see gender as a spectrum - some people identify as more female than others, some more male than others, and some people are somewhere closer to the middle of the spectrum. 


Terminology


Gender Identity: The subjective experience of one’s gender, a social identity.

Cisgender: A gender identity used to describe a person who identifies with the same gender as they were assigned at birth, i.e. ‘cis female’ or ‘cis male’. 

Transgender: A gender identity used to describe a person who identifies with a gender which is different from their assigned-at-birth gender or sex. This can include other categories, such as genderqueer.

Genderqueer: A gender identity category that includes genders outside of the gender binary. This includes bigender (identifying as both male and female) or agender/gender neutral (not identifying with a gender).

Gender expression: The ways in which one expresses their gender, the outward presentation - including traits, norms, communication etc

Assigned-at-birth

Usually used in the phrases ‘female assigned-at-birth’ (FAAB), ‘male assigned-at-birth’ (MAAB) or variants, these refer to the sex/gender identities which an individual was designated at birth and during their childhood. If it is absolutely necessary to make reference to the birth-sex or -gender of a non-cisgender (see below) individual, this is considered the best terminology to use since it casts no reflections or aspersions on the ‘reality’ of that individual’s sex or gender in the present. Outside of private conversations built in an environment of deep trust and personal comfort, this necessity is unlikely ever to arise. It is also important to note that it is never acceptable to refer to someone’s assigned-at-birth gender as their ‘real’ gender, or their birth name as their ‘real’ name, and you should never ask what their birth name is unless it is crucial (i.e. it is still their legal name and is needed for official documents).


Preferred Pronouns


Pronoun use is usually one of the most important and sensitive areas of gender identity, and one of the most important parts of accepting and respecting someone’s gender identity is using their preferred pronouns. Because there is more to gender than meets the eye, you cannot determine somebody’s gender identity by sight and may not know their preferred pronoun before speaking to them. When meeting new people, it can be good practice to ask for one’s preferred pronoun, or refer to them as ‘they/them’ until you learn otherwise. Below are just a few examples of pronouns, including some you may not previously have encountered:

he/him/his and she/her/hers: traditional pronouns. Often associated with specific binary genders but by no means limited to them, and may be used or preferred by anyone.

they/them/theirs: gender-neutral pronouns traditionally used in the plural but also adopted by many in the singular who wish to avoid traditionally gendered pronouns.

ze/hir/hirs: alternatively used gender-neutral pronoun set. Rhymes with ‘knee/hear/hears’.

It is best to use gender neutral phrases and terms wherever possible. For example, instead of saying “The player may register his or her team” you could say “The player may register their team”.


Sexual, Physical, and Verbal Harassment


QuidditchUK is committed to providing an environment to volunteers and players that is free from all kinds of harassment. Harassment from QuidditchUK members, or during a QuidditchUK event, will not be tolerated. Harassment constitutes unwelcome actions including but not limited to: deliberate or repeated misgendering, sexual advances, suggestive jokes, gifts, statements, physical or verbal threats, lack of respect for personal space, aggression in personal interactions, and more. Any kind of unwelcome interaction, physical or not, is inappropriate. Any person of any demographic is capable of giving or receiving harassment. 

QuidditchUK maintains a very strict anti-harassment stance and is dedicated to ensuring that quidditch remains and leads the way as a safe and inclusive sporting community. If any individual is made to feel uncomfortable by anyone, QuidditchUK staff member or not, at any event or in any space under the QuidditchUK umbrella, and especially if it is due to disrespect on the basis of the issues covered here, that person should immediately talk to a member of the Executive Management Team or complete the ‘Make a Complaint’ form. Victims and reporters of harassment will not receive any negative repercussions from notifying QuidditchUK of the situation.