Arkansas BANS doctors from giving puberty blockers and hormone treatments to trans children aged under 18

 Arkansas lawmakers passed a measure on Monday that could make the state the first in the country to prevent doctors from providing certain types of care to transgender youth, part of a wave of legislation that would restrict transgender rights.

The Arkansas legislation threatens any healthcare professional who provides puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones or gender-affirming surgery to minors with losing their medical license and opens them up to lawsuits from patients who later regret their procedures.

Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, has declined to say whether he would sign the bill into law. The state legislature is dominated by Republicans.


'The governor will review the bill more closely, listen to the debate, study it and make a decision on the legislation,' his spokesperson Katie Beck said in an email.

The Republican-dominated Arkansas state legislature (seen in the above January 12 file photo in Little Rock) on Monday passed a measure that would ban doctors from providing certain types of hormonal treatments to transgender teens under the age of 18

The Republican-dominated Arkansas state legislature (seen in the above January 12 file photo in Little Rock) on Monday passed a measure that would ban doctors from providing certain types of hormonal treatments to transgender teens under the age of 18

The image above shows LGBTQ activists rallying outside the Arkansas State Capitol in Little Rock on March 19 against proposed legislation

The image above shows LGBTQ activists rallying outside the Arkansas State Capitol in Little Rock on March 19 against proposed legislation

The demonstration was staged by the American Civil Liberties Union, which has condemned a wave of legislation that it says is aimed at curbing transgender rights

The demonstration was staged by the American Civil Liberties Union, which has condemned a wave of legislation that it says is aimed at curbing transgender rights

HB1570 effectively bans transgender reassignment surgery for anyone seeking to transition before the age of 18

HB1570 effectively bans transgender reassignment surgery for anyone seeking to transition before the age of 18

Sixteen other states are considering similar bills. Civil rights organizations have said they are likely to sue to stop any such bills that are enacted.

On Friday, Hutchinson signed another bill opposed by transgender advocates, which would ban transgender women and girls from playing female sports.

Hutchinson on Friday also signed into law legislation allowing doctors to refuse to treat someone because of religious or moral objections, a move opponents have said will give providers broad powers to turn away LGBTQ patients and others.


The medical conscience objections law says health care workers and institutions have the right to not participate in non-emergency treatments that violate their conscience. 

The new law won't take effect until late this summer. 

Republicans across the country have introduced a record 127 bills on transgender issues in 22 states this year, according to the Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBTQ organization in the United States.

Like Arkansas, Mississippi also enacted a law this month that bans athletes who were designated male at birth from playing women's or girls sports at public schools or universities. 

The above 2019 file photo shows a large trans rights flag unfurled outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC

The above 2019 file photo shows a large trans rights flag unfurled outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC

Idaho passed one last year that was blocked by a federal court.

Proponents of the medical legislation say they want to protect children from irreversible procedures they could later regret.

'They're not mature enough to make those kinds of decisions,' said Tennessee state Representative John Ragan, the lead sponsor of a bill that would ban most transgender treatment for minors unless it has the consent of three physicians.

Transgender advocates see the proposals as a political ploy to whip up right-wing outrage. 

They contend the measures are unconstitutional, defy the best medical science and rely on outdated stereotypes.

'As a trans person, as a parent, I can't stress enough how devastating the consequences would be,' Chase Strangio, deputy director for transgender justice at the American Civil Liberties Union, told a news conference on Monday.

Others on Twitter weighed in on the proposed legislation.

Raquel Willis tweeted: 'Transphobes don't just strip trans women of being women and trans men of being men... as you can see in Arkansas and states across the country, they strip trans children of being children, and essentially, they strip all trans people of simply being people.'

Another Twitter commenter wrote: 'Arkansas has failed its children.' The tweet included the hashtags #TransRightsAreHumanRights #TransIsBeautiful.

Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of former President and Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton, tweeted: 'For everyone you know in Arkansas, please urge them to demand that Gov. @AsaHutchinson veto HB 1570 and protect trans kids.'

Jake Lobin tweeted: 'Dear Arkansas Republicans.... You can't be "pro-life" AND "anti-trans".' 

The American Academy of Pediatrics, which represents 67,000 pediatricians, was among several medical organizations to oppose the Arkansas bill, saying it would cut off trans kids from needed medical care and needlessly increase their already high risk of suicide.

Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson on Thursday signed a law banning transgender women and girls from competing in school sports consistent with their gender identity, making the state the second to approve such a restriction so far this year 

Arkansas is the third state to sign a bill into law that excludes transgender athletes from female sports

Arkansas is the third state to sign a bill into law that excludes transgender athletes from female sports

Both sides accuse their opponents of promoting junk science and ignoring common sense.

Transgender advocates backing gender-affirming care say each step is undertaken with the consultation of doctors, therapists and social workers.

Not all teenagers who question their gender identity decide to go through with transition.


But those who consistently identify as transgender can be prescribed puberty blockers. 

Others graduate to cross-sex hormone therapy, a more serious commitment to transitioning. 

A small number opt for some type of surgery with parental consent, but experts say those cases for minors are rare.

'There's a misperception that we automatically set them on this path from puberty blockers to hormones to surgery. These are very considered decisions. The process can occur over years before surgery is considered,' said Dr. Loren Schechter, a plastic surgeon specializing in gender confirmation surgery.

One Arkansas mother who opposed the bill said her 15-year-old transgender son went through six months of therapy and doctors' visits before beginning hormone therapy.

'Dylan is happy, healthy, confident and hopeful for his future,' Joanna Brandt told the ACLU news conference.

But proponents of the laws say children under 18 should be prevented from receiving any such treatments, accusing transgender advocates of minimizing the side effects and downplaying cases where transgender people regret having made the transition.

The socially conservative American College of Pediatricians, which represents 600 physicians and healthcare professionals, has come out in favor of the legislation, saying affirming gender discordance too early will push young people to transition.

Arkansas BANS doctors from giving puberty blockers and hormone treatments to trans children aged under 18 Arkansas BANS doctors from giving puberty blockers and hormone treatments to trans children aged under 18 Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 09:27 Rating: 5

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