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Patagonia climb ambassador discusses gender identity and sport in documentary

Outdoor clothing brand Patagonia is venturing off the beaten track of fashion messaging with a feature-length documentary focusing on gender identity and equality.

They/Them centers on Arizonan climber Lor Sabourin, a climber, guide and coach who identifies as trans, to bring inclusivity and acceptance to new audiences.

An advocate of using gender-neutral pronouns they/them in place of the traditional he/she or him/her, Sabourin speaks with passion on the need to de-genderize sports to ensure no one is excluded.

Sabourin said: “Climbing has this amazing opportunity to provide a safe space for gender non-conforming people to participate in sports because our sport isn’t as highly gendered as others, especially in the outdoor realm. These types of sports are special at a time when so many trans people are being pushed out of sports, as they can create a framework for showing how we can be more inclusive.

“I hope that this film paints a story of what sports can mean to a person who has experienced systems of oppression, and how it can give them a sense of safety in their body – and how being outside can be liberating."

Justin Roth, Patagonia’s global marketing manager for alpine & rock climbing, added: “It’s well documented and understood within the LGBTQ+ community that climbing, and the outdoor movement at large, has a lot of room to become more inclusive of marginalized groups."

The full 70-minute documentary is available to view now on Patagonia’s website.

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