after a midterm elections and record flow anti transgender law Over the last year, Republican state lawmakers have been zeroing in on questions of bodily autonomy, with new proposals this year to limit access to gender-affirming health care and abortion.
More than two dozen bills seeking to restrict transgender health care access have been introduced in 11 states – Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Virginia – in early legislative for the sessions 2023.
Bills targeting other aspects of trans livelihoods have been filed in many of the same states and are expected in several other states with GOP majorities.
Gender-affirming health care providers and parents of trans youth are the primary targets of these bills, many of which seek to criminalize helping a trans child, which doctors and psychologists widely refer to as “medically necessary care.” Admit it.
Erin Reed, a researcher tracking transgender legislation, said the statehouse where Republicans have expanded their margins in the midterms will likely double down on anti-trans legislation this year and reintroduce some of the more drastic measures that didn’t pass in previous sessions. Will present from
Three of the 35 anti-LGBTQ bills already introduced in Texas would classify providing gender-affirming care to minors as child abuse. Instructions from Republican Gov. Greg Abbott last year which ordered child welfare agents to investigate abuse among parents who allow their children to receive gender-affirming care.
In Tennessee, the GOP-controlled legislature announced after Election Day that its first priority would be to ban medical providers from altering a child’s hormones or performing surgeries that enable them to present as a gender different from their own. prepaid bill Will replace existing law with more stringent restrictions.
The World Professional Association for Transgender Health said last year that teens experiencing gender dysphoria You can start taking hormones at age 14 and have some surgeries at age 15 or 17. The group acknowledged the potential risks but said it was unethical to withhold early treatments, which could improve psychological well-being and reduce the risk of suicide.
The legislation was pre-filed this week in Republican-controlled Oklahoma, which passed the ban last year. trans participation in sports And using the school bathroomSeeks to ban gender-affirming care for patients under 26 years of age And prevent it from being covered under the state’s Medicaid program.
“This is the worst anti-trans bill I have ever seen filed in any state,” Reid said, noting that adult medical transition restrictions were a “hypothetical enhancement” until recently.
would be another oklahoma proposal Prohibition on distribution of public funds For organizations that provide gender-affirming procedures to patients under the age of 21.
The bill’s sponsor, Republican state representative Jim Olsen, said, “It is irresponsible for someone in health care to provide or recommend life-changing surgery that they may later regret.” “Performing irreversible procedures on young people can cause irreparable harm to them later in life, both mentally and physically.”
A similar bill previously filed in South Carolina, where Republicans control both chambers, also requires Trans adults over the age of 21 get referrals with your doctor and a licensed psychotherapist before starting treatment.
Cathy Renna, spokeswoman for the National LGBTQ Task Force, said she viewed these bills as the product of a “permissive climate of hate”, fueled by misinformation and intimidation, that fueled anti-LGBTQ rhetoric during the years of former President Donald Trump. Has since become more palatable. Election in 2016.
“There are politicians, celebrities and just people in our communities who were allowed under Trump to do and say hurtful things without consequence,” Renna said. “It opened up a nightmare Pandora’s box of sexism, racism, homophobia, transphobia, antisemitism.”
“When you look back at the last few years,” she said of the LGBTQ community, “we feel like we’re under attack in a way we haven’t been in decades.”
Meanwhile, Democrats in some states are taking a more aggressive approach to transgender health protections.
A new California law, effective January 1, Protects families of transgender youth from criminal prosecution If they travel to California for gender-affirming health procedures, such as surgery or hormone therapy, from states that ban such treatment for minors. While making California a refuge for trans youth and their parents, the law prevents out-of-state subpoenas and prohibits medical providers from sharing information on gender-affirming care with out-of-state entities.
Second california billfiled in December, would expand those protections by preventing a magistrate from issuing an arrest warrant for violating another state’s law that criminalizes helping someone obtain an abortion or gender-affirming care.
An Illinois lawmaker launched a similar sanctuary bill at the end of last year. State The House passed another bill on Friday To enhance safety for patients and providers of abortion and gender-affirming treatment.
and in Minnesota, where Democrats gained a trifecta of control of state government in the midterm elections, a new bill Would give the state jurisdiction over child custody cases involving parents who bring their children to Minnesota for gender-affirming health care.
Reed, a trans woman, is overseeing a growing list of other proposals in the state house, including drag performance bans, bathroom use restrictions, limits on LGBTQ discussions in schools, and barriers to changing gender markers on driver’s licenses or birth certificates. Huh. But the proposed increasing age minimum to access gender-affirming care is among her major concerns.
“Adult transition restrictions are coming into play, and I’m already hearing some saying, ‘Well, the brain doesn’t develop until 25, so why not ban it until then,'” she said. “Any further loss of autonomy is incredibly concerning.”
Hannah Schoenbaum, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, is a core member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a non-profit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on undercover issues.
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