Let Brett Bowden Play Football!
  • Petitioned The North Carolina High School Athletic Association

This petition was delivered to:

The North Carolina High School Athletic Association

Let Brett Bowden Play Football!

    1. Taylor Bowden
    2. Petition by

      Taylor Bowden

      Newton Grove, NC

Rodney Brett Bowden is 19 and has Down Syndrome. He is a junior at Hobbton High School in Newton Grove, North Carolina.

Brett loves to play football, draw, play video games, and of course be a normal 19 year old boy. He has the personality and attitude that everyone wants and needs. Everyone loves Brett with all of their hearts.

He has been playing on the varsity team for Hobbton every since he was a freshman. This year Brett was very excited about playing, he had already started practicing and bonding with the team. Brett calls his teammates "his brothers."

This young boy is very passionate about this game of football and it's not like Brett even plays, he just enjoys warming up with the team, practicing, putting on that number 11 jersey and pads. This is what he looks forward to when school starts.

Now that football has started, The North Carolina High School Association has told the coaches and our family that Brett is not allowed to play because he is 19 years old. Everyone is heartbroken by what they have told us. We are trying to fight this because everyone in the community believes that there are ways around the rules!

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Reached 8,000 signatures
    2. Next step: Join Brett's Facebook page

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Have you "liked" Brett Bowden's Facebook page and joined the more than 40K who are coming together in support of him and his family?

    3. Reached 5,000 signatures
    4. we have almost gotten 2000!

      Taylor Bowden
      Petition Organizer

      everyone keep sharing and signing the petition! we need many many more.
      thank you all so much,
      love the bowden family!

    5. Reached 1,000 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Kelly Rogers SAN JOSE, CA
      • almost 3 years ago

      If his doctor releases him why not allow him to play. Stop this discrimination, If he is an asset to the team it is cruel and unusual punishment he does'nt need to experence

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    • Pamela Purvis DRY BRANCH, GA
      • almost 3 years ago

      i believe he and any one else with circumstances such as his should be allowed to participate regardless of age. this is probably not the first time something like this has happened and it wont be the last unless you do something about it! God Bless him his family and community that are standing behind him. i am currently using this as a topic for my ethics paper and would love to know the outcome!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Seth Holden LENOIR, NC
      • about 3 years ago

      Just because someone with a disability may learn slower than others doesnt mean that they don't have the same desires as everyone else. There is nothing like playing sports with friends you care about and who care about you. Regardless of the kids age let him be on the team and suit up. stop being dicks nchsa.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Paulette MacMillan GWYNN OAK, MD
      • about 3 years ago

      Because Brett's age is being used as an excuse to keep him off the field.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Megan Johnson GREENVILLE, OH
      • about 3 years ago

      What on earth is wrong with him still playing football? He is still enrolled in the school and it's not like he was held back to give the team an advantage like some schools do. Heck when I was in junior high we had a regular student who was held back once or twice in early elementary school so when it came time to play sports in junior high in 8th grade he had to play for the high school teams because of his age, and he played sports until he graduated even though he was older than us. I don't see what the big deal is, he deserves the right to play football like any other junior would have regardless of his age. There are always exceptions to every rule and I think that they should make an exception in his case. By not letting him play they are not only breaking the law but they are showing the students and everyone in the community that Brett should be treated as a second class citizen because he has down syndrome and they were basically just biding their time until he turned 18 so he wouldn't be allowed to play anymore.

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