Alabama passes bill criminalising gender-affirming healthcare for Trans youth

The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly voted in favour of passing a bill criminalising gender-affirming healthcare for Trans youth

Alabama is to pass legislation prohibiting Trans Youth from attaining gender-affirming healthcare. the photograph show a person in a crowd holding a sign saying
Image: Via Instagram - @glblctzn ( Kathy Willens/AP)

The Alabama House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed the most oppressive anti-Trans bill in the US to date.
The bill, which was voted in by a landslide majority of 66 to 28, will see a possible 10-year prison sentence imposed for medical professionals who provide gender-affirming healthcare to Trans youth in Alabama, including hormone treatment, puberty blockers and gender-affirming surgery.

The new legislation will also mean that nurses, counsellors, teachers, principals “or other administrative officials at a public or private school” are prohibited from “encouraging or coercing a minor” to withhold their gender identity. They will also be  required to report to parents or guardians when they feel that a “minor’s perception of his or her gender or sex is inconsistent with the minor’s sex.” 

Equating the bill to how minors are prohibited from getting tattoos or buying nicotine products, Republican Representative Wes Allen said, “We make decisions in this body all the time that are to protect children from making decisions that could permanently harm them”.

Although the bill was primarily supported by Republic representatives, it also garnered strong support from many Democrats. 

In his speech to the chamber, Democratic Representative Neil Rafferty stated, “This is not a partisan issue… this is an issue that deals with being (a) human being,” adding, “ this is not a conservative bill.”

Human Rights Campaign’s Alabama State Director, Carmarion D Anderson-Harvey, condemned the decision saying, “Anti-equality legislators in the state capital have recklessly passed a bill that goes directly against the best advice of the medical community and intrudes on the rights of parents and families to make their own medical decisions,” according to a report in the Independent.

After being passed by the House, the bill now passes to the Republican Governor Kay Ivey to sign it into state legislation. According to Reuters, whilst her office had not offered a comment on whether or not she would pass the bill, considering her support of anti-Trans legislation, especially towards Trans youth, it would appear that she will. Last year, she signed a bill banning Trans athletes from K-12 sports.

In a further blow to Trans youth, prior to passing the bill on healthcare, the House also voted in legislation prohibiting Trans youth from using bathrooms that don’t align with their biological sex. If both bills are signed into legislation, it will mean that Alabama will have the most prohibitive laws affecting Trans Youth in the US.

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