The states looking at restricting gender transition surgeries for minors in 2023
Several state lawmakers have already introduced bills to restrict access to “gender affirming care” for the 2023 legislative session, joining a growing number of states considering or adopting new restrictions for transgender youth.
Lawmakers in Missouri, Utah, Montana, South Carolina, and Oklahoma have pre-filed bills for consideration in 2023 that aim to ban or prohibit access to gender transition surgeries
, hormone therapy, or puberty blockers for minors.
VIRGINIA STATE SENATE RACE BECOMES BATTLEGROUND FOR ABORTION RIGHTS
Three separate bills were pre-filed by GOP lawmakers in Missouri in December that would ban health providers from providing gender transition procedures to minors. Each piece of legislation includes repercussions that health providers would face if they violate the law, such as having their medical licenses revoked.
The bills would each establish the Missouri Save Adolescents from Experimentation Act, which GOP lawmakers failed to advance this past year.
A bill filed ahead of the 2023 legislative session in Utah would prohibit people under 18 from receiving “sex characteristic surgical procedures” such as top surgeries. It would, however, allow doctors to perform breast reduction surgeries for minors if they needed it to alleviate pain.
The bill was sponsored by state Sen. Mike Kennedy (R-UT), who said at a Health and Human Services interim committee hearing in October that the legislation seeks to prevent minors from making “permanent decisions” that lead to “possibilities for regret.”
Meanwhile, state Rep. Jennifer Dailey-Provost (D-UT) argued that the bill, if passed down the road, would result in a lengthy and costly court battle for the state.
The bill is similar to legislation that was proposed earlier this year but did not advance to a committee vote.
State Rep. Keith Regier (R-MT) has sponsored a bill that would prohibit minors from undergoing gender transition surgeries.
“It is of grave concern to the Legislature that the medical community is allowing individuals who experience distress at identifying with their biological sex to be subjects of irreversible and drastic nongenital gender reassignment surgery and irreversible, permanently sterilizing genital gender reassignment surgery,” the bill reads
Several other pieces of legislation have been proposed in the state that aim to revise state laws concerning “gender-affirming care” for minors.
A bill proposed by state Rep. Jim Olsen (R-OK) would prohibit healthcare providers from providing or giving a referral for puberty blockers, hormones, and gender transition surgeries for people under 18 in Oklahoma. Olsen says the bill includes exceptions for genetic anomalies or mutations that are medically diagnosed.
Healthcare providers who violate the law would face a felony charge, along with a fine of up to $100,000, a 10-year prison sentence, or both and having their licenses revoked.
It would also prohibit state funding from going to an organization that provides the surgeries to minors. The bill can be considered when state lawmakers return on Feb. 6.
Two bills in South Carolina have been introduced by GOP lawmakers that would restrict minors’ access to gender transition surgeries. One piece of legislation proposed by state Sen. Danny Verdin (R-SC) would prohibit people under 21 from receiving “gender transition procedures” with limited exceptions if an adult over 21 obtains a referral from a licensed psychiatrist or primary care physician.
It also requires a teacher, school administrator, or another school employee who suspects or knows that a student has “gender dysphoria, gender identity disorder, and other psychological conditions that can result in a person identifying with a gender different than that of their sex assigned at birth or sex-related physical characteristics” to contact the minor’s guardian.
Another bill aims to prohibit healthcare professionals from providing the procedures to minors and would redefine “gender” in the state constitution so that it must match a person’s sex assigned at birth.
CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER
Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas, and Texas have already enacted policies that restrict children’s access to such treatments.
Democratic state lawmakers in California and Illinois, meanwhile, have proposed legislation that would protect people that violate another state’s law regarding “gender-affirming care.” A bill filed by state Sen. Mike Simmons (D-IL) would prohibit Illinois officials and police from seeking criminal or civil action against someone who is accused of violating another state’s law.