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[Details about such bills in each state will be updated under ‘Support.’]
Arkansas became the first state last year, to pass a law banning doctors from providing gender-affirming healthcare to trans youth including reversible puberty blockers and hormone therapy.
More than half of trans children were at risk of suicide this past year, and access to gender-affirming care is linked to being at lower risk of attempting suicide by nearly 40 percent in transgender and nonbinary youth, according to Trevor Project.
Now there are at least 17 active or pre-filed anti-trans bills attacking trans youth’s access to this healthcare in 14 states. These are bills that have either carried over from the last legislative session, or been introduced in the new one.
Last week, 58 transgender adults including actor Elliot Page, director Lilly Wachowski and activist Major Griffin-Gracy filed an amicus brief, documenting how critically life-saving it is to have access to gender-affirming care.
Attorney Jessie Lee Ann McGrath said in the brief: “just being able to live as myself has been one long period of euphoria. Being able to look in the mirror and being happy with the reflection I see has been magical. I no longer dislike the person looking back at me and that has made life worth living.”
Filmmaker Lilly Wachowski said in the brief: “When I started living as my true self, I would sometimes catch short sharp glimpses of my reflection in windows and cars as I’d walk along or ride my bike. It would make my heart skip a beat. The silhouette of my shadow on the ground cast by the afternoon sun was exhilarating and life affirming. If no one else did, the Sun saw me as I am.”
While some mainstream news outlets have been reporting on these bills, the coverage doesn’t always analyze how each bill is a system of erasure by politicians making trans youth’s lives a political gambit, attacking them year after year.
This space hopes to be an ongoing thread that critically analyzes the bills restricting healthcare for trans youth, beyond the numbers and sensationalization.