by Laurel Powell •
Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) — the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization — condemned the Texas Senate for passing Senate Bill 14, an anti-LGBTQ+ bill that would ban age appropriate medically necessary care for transgender youth under the age of 18 by prohibiting medical professionals from providing care and prohibiting public money from being spent on gender affirming care, measures that would impact insurance of coverage.
These bills are part of an aggressive ongoing effort in the Texas legislature to target LGTBQ+ equality, and especially the rights of transgender children and the people who love them. A companion bill, HB 1686, was heard in the Texas Public Health Committee on Monday and remains pending. At both the Senate State Affairs Committee and House Public Health Committee hearings, opponents of these bills far outnumbered those in favor: 203 to 29 in the Senate, and 2810 to 95 in the House. If HB 1686 reaches the House floor, it is likely to pass because 77 House Republicans have signed on as co-authors.
Gender-affirming care is age-appropriate care that is medically necessary for the well-being of many transgender and non-binary people who experience symptoms of gender dysphoria, or distress that results from having one’s gender identity not match their sex assigned at birth. Gender-affirming care is the integration of medical, mental health and social services. For transgender children, transition is an entirely social process which may include a new name or pronouns, wearing different clothes or styling one’s hair differently. At puberty, doctors may一in consultation with and having the informed consent of the transgender youth and their parents一prescribe reversible medication known as puberty-blockers, which allow a young person to safely reach an age in which they’re truly able to consent to further treatment.
THE FACTS ABOUT GENDER AFFIRMING CARE
Every credible medical organization – representing over 1.3 million doctors in the United States – calls for age-appropriate gender-affirming care for transgender and non-binary people.
Transgender children are not undergoing irreversible medical changes.
Being transgender is not new.
ALL gender-affirming care is:
And in many cases, this care is lifesaving:
For more information, please visit https://www.hrc.org/resources/get-the-facts-on-gender-affirming-care
STATE LEG SNAPSHOT
So far in 2023, HRC is tracking more than 470 anti-LGBTQ+ bills that have been introduced in statehouses across the country. More than 190 of those bills would specifically restrict the rights of transgender people, the highest number of bills targeting transgender people in a single year to date.
This year, HRC is tracking:
In a coordinated push led by national anti-LGBTQ+ groups, which deployed vintage discriminatory tropes, politicians in statehouses across the country introduced 315 discriminatory anti-LGBTQ+ bills in 2022 and 29 passed into law. Despite this, fewer than 10% of these efforts succeeded. The majority of the discriminatory bills – 149 bills – targeted the transgender and non-binary community, with the majority targeting children receiving the brunt of discriminatory legislation. By the end of the 2022 legislative session, a record 17 bills attacking transgender and non-binary children passed into law.
Anti-LGBTQ+ legislation in 2022 took several forms, including:
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