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Two proposed bills threatening healthcare for trans kids killed off by lawmakers as transphobic attacks continue

Vic Parsons February 4, 2020
A woman holding a sign which says "protect trans kids"

Sign supporting trans students. (Derek R Henkle/AFP/Getty)

Two proposed bills that threatened healthcare for trans minors and civil rights protections for trans communities have been killed off by lawmakers.

In Florida, a vote was cancelled on a bill that would have criminalised doctors for giving trans youth medically necessary treatment.

The bill is now lying dormant, with lawmakers saying there are no plans to revive it.

In Iowa, a bill that would have removed gender identity from state discrimination protection – making Iowa the first state to remove an entire category from such a law – has also been killed.

A lawmaker said of the Republican attempt to erase trans people from civil rights law: “This bill is dead.”

At least a dozen other anti-trans bills currently being considered.

These two anti-trans bills are part of a recent spate of more than a dozen bills introduced by Republican lawmakers that target transgender youth.

LGBT+ advocates based in the US say that the lawmakers are being influenced by conservative groups.

These bills include barring doctors from providing certain gender-related medical treatment to young trans people and banning young trans people from playing school sports.

In Tennessee, a Republican called Bruce Griffey has submitted a bill that would bar teachers from teaching if they let trans kids play sports.

Under the bill submitted to the Tennessee General Assembly, schools and teachers would face harsh sanctions for accommodating transgender children of any age in any single-sex sports.

South Dakota first to pass bill targeting healthcare for trans youth.

Last week, Republican lawmakers in South Dakota passed the first of this batch of anti-trans bills.

The bill, which passed in a 46-23 vote, will now go to the state senate where it could become law – making it illegal for doctors to give medically necessary care to trans children and teenagers.

Doctors in South Dakota who prescribe puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones to under 16’s with gender dysphoria could face a $2,000 fine and a year in prison under the proposed law.

“By blocking medical care supported by every major medical association, the legislature is compromising the health of trans youth in dangerous and potentially life-threatening ways,” said Libby Skarin, policy director for the ACLU of South Dakota, in a statement.

“Discrimination against a marginalised group is a distraction from the state’s real needs and hurts us all. Transgender young people live in our state and need to feel like the government represents them, too. The more we legislate solutions in search of problems, the more our communities suffer.”

More: anti-trans bills, trans healthcare, trans kids

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