Law Banning Trans Youth Health Care Slated to Take Effect Sept. 1

Unless a judge blocks it

People protest for trans kids’ rights at the Capitol, March 27, ahead of Senate Bill 14’s passage (Photo by Jana Birchum)

Hearings over the constitutionality of SB 14, the Republican law banning medical treatment for trans kids, began in earnest this week.

ACLU of Texas attorneys and family members presented arguments against SB 14 at a hearing on Aug. 15-16, asking Judge Maria Cantú Hexsel to block it from going into effect.

“This law is flagrantly unconstitutional and violates some of the most fundamental freedoms that many of us as Texas hold dear,” said Brian Klosterboer of the Texas ACLU. “Senate BIll 14 is as discriminatory as it gets. It only seeks to prohibit treatments for transgender youth with gender dysphoria while allowing the exact same medical care, including puberty blockers and hormones, to be prescribed to any other minor.”

If Cantú Hexsel doesn’t place a temporary injunction on the law, it will go into effect on Sept. 1, banning medical care for gender dysphoria. The treatment is proven to reduce anxiety and suicide among trans kids. The law would also require the state to revoke the medical licenses of doctors who provide care for gender dysphoria. Already, there are reports that doctors are closing their practices and leaving the state.

Speakers at a press conference on Wednesday pointed out that Texas politicians are attacking children to advance their political careers. “It’s imperative for me to emphasize that the cruelty is the point,” said Emmett Schelling, executive director of the Transgender Education Network of Texas. “If you take nothing else from me today, take that away and understand – the cruelty is the point. We shouldn’t be using Texas taxpayer dollars to harm families and, more than that, to harm children.”

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