Local News

Juvenile Gender-Affirming care fate in the hands of Kansas Legislators

Juvenile Gender-Affirming care fate in the hands of Kansas Legislators

Topeka, KS: Republican lawmakers in Kansas are on the verge of passing a bill that would outlaw gender-affirming medical treatment for children, despite the expected veto from the state’s Democratic governor. This development has won over those Republicans who had doubts about the bill, and there are concerns that this victory could pave the way for other efforts to restrict transgender rights as per the Associated Press.

On Thursday, advocates were optimistic that a bill that would prohibit doctors from prescribing hormone therapy, puberty blockers, or surgery to children experiencing gender dysphoria and would suspend the licenses of those doctors who violate the restriction would be approved by the Republican-controlled Senate.

Republicans had planned to hold a final vote on Thursday, but they scrapped the plan in the hopes of altering the law’s language to ensure a final vote, as they wanted to submit the bill to Governor Laura Kelly with the two-thirds majority needed to overcome her veto later.

“It’s A Parent’s Right To Choose.” Parents Protest Outside Elementary School Against LGBTQ+ Curriculum

“It’s close enough,” said Republican Senate President Ty Masterson of the Wichita region, who predicted final approval next week.

If the Senate agrees with the House, which the Republicans already controlled on Wednesday, Kelly will get the bill.

Care that affirms a child’s gender has been limited or even forbidden in at least 23 places where Republicans control the legislature. Legislators in Kansas sought to enact a ban last year, but the Republican-led Senate was unable to overcome Kelly’s veto with a single vote (and three Republicans cast “no” votes).

Republican lawmakers have argued that, in order to avoid any legal complications, it is more prudent to let juveniles now undergoing hormone treatment to gradually taper off of their therapies. If senators want to make a change, they’ll need to convince the House to vote for it.

After a net gain of 12 votes in favor of a ban on Wednesday compared to last year’s vote, advocates have decided to try to lock up a two-thirds majority in the Senate before a veto. A two-thirds majority looked to be held by supporters in the House, even including those who were not present on Wednesday.

Republican state representative from western Kansas Susan Concannon stated on Thursday that she did not receive a single email or phone contact urging her to maintain her voting record from the previous year.

Legislation to prohibit gender-affirming care advances following comprehensive approval by the Wyoming Senate

Supporters of the bill claim they are worried about children’s safety, but the Kansas law has made transgender people and LGBTQ+ advocates even more fearful that Republicans in Kansas and other states headed by Republicans would pursue even more restrictions next year.

Last month, the state of Ohio decided against limiting adult care, but a legislation in Florida passed in 2023 that was meant to protect children also limited adult care, as did a rule in Missouri that was only in place for a short time.

Lawrence resident and LGBTQ+ rights activist Iridescent Riffel, 27, stated, “The goalposts are not firm” when asked about the law. “They will perpetually be pushed to the right.”

If these limits are passed in Kansas, their opponents will certainly file a lawsuit to stop them. While courts in other states have upheld restrictions in Alabama and Georgia, they have barred their implementation in Arkansas, Idaho, and Montana.

Major U.S. medical organizations, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Medical Association, have voiced their disapproval of laws that limit or prohibit gender-affirming healthcare. Care providers often claim that their services prevent suicide by reducing the prevalence of mental health issues including depression and anxiety.

Also, Kansas parents of non-binary or transgender children and young transgender people told lawmakers that gender-affirming is important for their health, and that doctors were honest about the risks and didn’t hurry their decisions.

According to 20-year-old transgender student Anthony Alvarez of the University of Kansas, he had to go through an extra evaluation to make sure he wanted testosterone therapy, even though a doctor was ready to give them.

His intention to have the double mastectomy, or “top surgery,” in December has him anticipating a deeper voice and the growth of facial hair. He claims that the despair and anxiety that plagued his life prior to his shift have faded, and as a result, he is considerably happier now.

Republican legislators characterize hormone therapy and puberty blockers as being excessively dangerous for young patients. According to a statement released by top Kansas Republican House leaders on Wednesday, they are taking action to stop “experimental” treatments from causing permanent harm.

Bill proponents referenced an English National Health Service statement this week that disputed the safety and efficacy of puberty blockers and said that “there is not enough evidence” to “make the treatment routinely available.” This is a point that healthcare practitioners in the United States disagree with. This announcement came after the NHS instituted a temporary policy the previous year

During an early Thursday gathering of Republican senators, Kansas City Republican and Senate Health Committee Chair Beverly Gossage began a briefing on the measure by saying, “It’s talking about children.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *