HRC’s Weekly State Fights Report: Tennessee Amidst Anti-LGBTQ+ Onslaught

by Brandon Wolf

Data Updated March 15



As anti-LGBTQ+ legislation stalls in key states, MAGA lawmakers in Tennessee are advancing more than a dozen anti-LGBTQ+ bills through the legislature. On Tuesday, HRC delivered in-person testimony in opposition to SB1738, which would create a cause of action for a foster or adoptive parent who believes they've been discriminated against because of their anti-LGBTQ+ views. It would also allow placement of an LGBTQ+ child with a family who believes LGBTQ+ identities are sinful or problematic, or who will enroll them in so-called “conversion therapy,” and makes it clear that a policy that says otherwise is not presumed to be in the best interest of the child. HRC also delivered in-person testimony on SB1810, a bill that would erode trust and subject trusted school staff to disciplinary action for supporting LGBTQ+ students with hostile home environments, where it passed.

Even before the onslaught of bills now advancing, Tennessee had already enacted more anti-LGBTQ+ laws than any other state since 2015. And rather than focus on pressing issues impacting Tennesseans, the MAGA faithful in the state legislature continue to breathlessly target LGBTQ+ people.


Last Tuesday, the Wisconsin Senate adjourned for the year, following the Assembly’s adjournment a few weeks ago. Before they left, the Senate passed AB377, an anti-transgender sports ban. AB510, a so-called “parents rights” bill was passed in February. With adjournment, both bills now head to the governor’s desk. All eyes are now on Governor Evers, who has promised to veto any bill that hurts LGBTQ+ youth.


  • Arizona: Last Tuesday, the House Education Committee passed SB1182, a bill restricting access to school shower rooms for transgender students.

  • Georgia: HRC is tracking a last-minute surprise move by state senators in Georgia to amend an unrelated bill to add language that expands Georgia's ban on gender-affirming health care for youth, HB1170. The bill was amended without providing any opportunity for legitimate medical organizations or anyone directly impacted by this legislation to be present or provide testimony.

  • Kansas: Last Tuesday, the Kansas House passed SB233, a bill containing a ban on gender-affirming care for transgender youth. The Health and Human Services committee inserted HB2791, the gender-affirming care ban that was vetoed last year by Governor Kelly, into this bill in an effort to subvert proceedings. It goes to the Senate floor next for consideration.

  • Michigan: On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on HB4718, a pro-equality bill banning the LGBTQ+ panic defense in the state.

  • Missouri: On Tuesday, the Senate Select Committee on Empowering Missouri Parents and Children held a hearing on SB1203. Under the bill, schools would be forced to single-out for display all instructional and training materials related to nondiscrimination, DEI, race, ethnicity, sex, or bias on school websites.


“LGBTQ+ people are powerful and resilient, but from access to health care to sports participation to classroom discrimination, members of the community, especially transgender people, are under attack. The Biden-Harris administration can still do a great deal to stem that flood of hate and discrimination, and in the process make life measurably better for our community.”

HRC President Kelley Robinson in The Advocate

To follow HRC’s state legislation work on Twitter, visit here. For Instagram, visit here.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ+ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.


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