US: Missouri becomes the latest state to ban gender-affirming care, limit transgender student athletes
The US state of Missouri has become the latest to approve a ban on gender-affirming healthcare for transgender people. The GOP lawmakers also approved a bill wherein transgender girls and women will be banned from playing in female sports teams.
The gender-affirming care ban is expected to take effect from August 28 under which transgender minors won't have access to puberty blockers, hormones or gender-affirming surgery. The restrictions will affect some adults, such as prisoners and inmates, who will be unable to avail of any gender-affirming care as Medicaid health care won't cover the procedure.
As for banning transgender girls and women from sports, the measure would apply from kindergarten through college, both in public and private schools. If any educational institution goes against the mandate, they would lose state funding.
Bills sent to the Republican governor
Both the bills have been sent to Governor Mike Parson who is expected to sign them soon. The Republican leader was the one who pushed the GOP lawmakers to get the bill approved or else work beyond the normal end of their session.
“When you have kids being surgically and or chemically altered for life for no good reason, yes, it’s time for the government to get involved,” said Republican Rep. Brad Hudson as the bill was approved on the House floor.
North Dakota bill ignoring transgender pronouns
The decision by the Missouri House comes a day after North Dakota Senate lawmakers passed a bill to ignore the pronouns the transgender students use.
According to the bill approved, public schools and government entities are prohibited from requiring teachers and employees to refer to transgender people by their pronouns.
Additionally, it prohibits transgender individuals from using the bathroom of their choice without prior approval from a parent or guardian. Under the law, teachers will be mandated to tell parents/guardians about their ward if they identify as transgender.
Overall, at least 16 states across the US have either restricted or banned gender-affirming care for minors, while at least eight states have enacted laws preventing transgender people from using the restrooms associated with their gender identities.
The banning of gender-affirming care and restricting sports participation across US states is part of a national push by the conservatives to put restrictions on transgender people.