Texas Senate Passes Sweeping Ban to Prohibit Trans Youth and Adults from Receiving Necessary Medical Care

by HRC Staff

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) — the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization — condemned today’s vote in the Texas Senate approving SB 1029 by a vote of 18-12, a wide-ranging bill that would make it nearly impossible for transgender Texans of any age to access age-appropriate, best practice, gender-affirming care.

This bill singles out gender-affirming care and creates special obstacles - obstacles that do not exist for other types of best-practice, medically necessary care - to make it effectively impossible for a health care provider to provide gender affirming care to transgender people of any age, or for an insurer to cover such care. For example, it would overrule the usual medical malpractice rules - that govern everything from childbirth to plastic surgery to a quadruple bypass - to make a special rule saying that an insurer would have to pay for any detransition-related care received at any point in a person’s life. It also prevents insurers from providing health benefits that include gender affirming-care, and prevents Medicaid, CHIP, or other publicly-funded insurers from covering gender-affirming care.

Decisions about whether and when to pursue best practice, age-appropriate gender-affirming care should be made by a patient, their family, and their doctor - not the Texas Senate. This care is recommended by the entire mainstream American medical establishment, and politicians don’t belong in doctor’s offices with parents and transgender youth. This bill will do real, lasting harm to transgender Texans of all ages who deserve access to the life-saving medically necessary health care they need.

Cathryn Oakley, Human Rights State Legislative Director and Senior Counsel

Texas alone is responsible for more than 20% of the 500 anti-LGTBQ+ bills that have been introduced in state legislatures across the country. Anti-equality legislators in Texas have introduced more than 100 anti-LGTBQ+ bills, and more than 25 are currently advancing through the legislature.

Proponents of bills that limit access to gender-affirming care have claimed to do so because they believe transgender youth can’t understand the long-term consequences of their care - ignoring the fact that parents must consent to any care a minor receives - but bills like SB 1029 reveal that their aim is broader: to prohibit access to medical care for all transgender people, including transgender adults.

This proposed law is one of many dangerous efforts far right political extremists and national anti-LGBTQ+ organizations are pushing in Texas and across the country against transgender youth and their families. Bolstered by disinformation spread by social media and designed to take aim at age-appropriate, life-saving, medically necessary care for transgender youth, these bans directly place the health, safety and wellbeing of the transgender community at risk.


So far in 2023, HRC is opposing more than 500 anti-LGBTQ+ bills that have been introduced in statehouses across the country. More than 210 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:

  • More than 120 bills that would prevent transgender youth from being able to access age-appropriate, medically-necessary, best-practice health care; this year, eleven have already become law in Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, South Dakota, Utah, Iowa, Idaho, Indiana, Georgia, Kentucky, and West Virginia.

  • More than 30 bathroom ban bills filed,

  • More than 100 curriculum censorship bills and 40 anti-drag performance bills.


  • 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.
    • “Transition-related” or “gender-affirming” care looks different for every transgender and non-binary person.

    • Parents, their kids, and doctors make decisions together, and no medical interventions with permanent consequences happen until a transgender person is old enough to give truly informed consent.

  • Gender transition is a personal process that can include changing clothes, names, and hairstyles to fit a person’s gender identity.
    • Some people take medication, and some do not; some adults have surgeries, and others do not. How someone transitions is their choice, to be made with their family and their doctor.

    • Therapists, parents and health care providers work together to determine which changes to make at a given time that are in the best interest of the child.

    • In most young children, this care can be entirely social. This means:
      • New name

      • New hairstyle

      • New clothing

      • None of this care is irreversible.

  • Being transgender is not new.
    • Some say it can feel like being transgender is very new – but that’s because the media has been covering it more in recent months and years/
    • But transgender people have always existed and will continue to exist regardless of the bills we pass.
    • And very few transgender people change their mind.
  • ALL gender-affirming care is:
    • Age-appropriate

    • Medically necessary

    • Supported by all major medical organizations

    • Made in consultation with medical and mental health professionals AND parents

  • And in many cases, this care is lifesaving!
    • A recent study from the Trevor Project provides data supporting this — transgender youth with access to gender-affirming hormone therapy have lower rates of depression and are at a lower risk for suicide.

For more information, please visit https://www.hrc.org/resources/get-the-facts-on-gender-affirming-care

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