STOP THE TRANSGENDER 21 ACT!
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In a potential first, Mississippi is attempting to prevent anyone from receiving transition-related healthcare if they are under the age of 21. That would restrict trans people from accessing potentially life-altering treatment, potentially longer than they are restricted from voting, consuming alcohol, or marriage.
State Senator Angela Burks Hill (R) has proposed what is called the “Transgender 21 Act,” which would “prohibit certain medical procedures from being performed upon a minor” and penalizing anyone that tries to advocate for trans youth to seek healthcare-related to their identity, even if it is non-surgical or non-hormonal.
Under the “Transgender 21 Act,” trans youth would not be able to seek gender-affirming care, and medical professionals could be punished for even bringing up their gender identity without the consult and express permission of a trans youth’s parents or guardians. It would also make it legally required for medical professionals to out trans youth if they try to receive treatment related to their gender identity, or face civil punishment. State employees are also barred from trying to protect trans youth’s gender identity.
The bill’s purpose is to prevent anything medical that would “address a discordance between an individual’s sex and sense of identity.” The proposal says that people under 21 should not receive gender-affirming care because they “are incapable of comprehending the negative implications and life-altering difficulties” of their decisions.
The act, as proposed based on its 200-word title, would provide “a good-faith exception for a minor born with a medically verifiable genetic disorder of sexual development.”
If a person under 21 is intersex, has “external biological sex characteristics that are ambiguous and irresolvable,” or a specific chromosomal makeup, they would be allowed to receive medical treatment — presuming they would undergo a medical examination to “medically” verify their identity or a test to determine they do “not have the normal sex chromosome structure.”
It would also allow cisgender people to still receive breast enhancements or reductions as minors or teenagers while restricting other gender-specific treatment.
But it would “prohibit the state, its agents, and political subdivision” from “infringing” on parents’ rights to decide whether or not to block their children from receiving any treatment related to being transgender, gender non-conforming, or having “gender dysphoria.” Surgeries and hormonal treatment would be banned for people under 21 altogether.
The proposal, if passed, would also protect so-called “conversion therapy” or similar “guidance,” and ban or penalize anyone that tries “taking adverse action” against “counsel” that is “consistent with conscience or religious belief… whether or not the counsel… is described as therapy.”
The ban on getting gender-affirming hormones or surgery until someone turns 21 would be longer than most other age-based restrictions in the state. Youth in Mississippi can enlist in the military at age 17, get cosmetic surgery and own a gun at age 18, and vote at age 18. Teens as young as 15 can get married with parental consent, and at age 18 can consume alcohol if a parent consents as well.
This is not only an infringement on human rights but also determinational to the health and well-being of the LGBTQ youth in Mississippi. If passed, this will go into effect in July 2021. Please help bring recognition to this and do what you can to protect the rights of those who fought so hard to get them.
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