Republicans in South Dakota have long considered legislation aimed at restricting the health care, school facilities and sports teams available to transgender youth. A law banning transgender girls and college-aged women from participating in gender-appropriate sports has come into force after being passed by Congress last year.
Other proposals aimed at trans youth have met with mixed success in Republican-controlled state legislatures, but critics say even submitting the proposal sends a harmful message to trans children. says.
“Gender-affirming care is a key component of enabling transgender adolescents to succeed in school, develop healthy relationships with friends and family, and live truly and authentically who they are,” said the Democratic Party. Rep. Erin Healy said.
But Republican Rep. John Hansen, one of the legislators pushing the bill, argued that adolescence is the “natural cure” for gender identity disorders.
“This is a mental health issue that needs to be addressed,” said Rep. Bethany Soie, a major sponsor of the bill.
Samantha Chapman, advocacy manager for the ACLU in South Dakota, said in a statement that legislators proposing the bill are spreading “lies and misinformation” about transgender people.
The World Professional Association for Transgender Health said last year that teens experiencing gender dysphoria can start taking hormones at age 14 and undergo certain surgeries at age 15 or 17. rice field. Improves psychological well-being and reduces suicide risk.
But conservative state legislators across the country are targeting transgender health care. Similar bans were passed in Arkansas and Alabama last year. However, both were blocked by federal courts.
“Every year, South Dakota legislators focus on transgender youth,” Chapman said. “And each year, the transgender community is hurt while meaningful issues remain unresolved.”