The newest trend of anti-trans legislation is sweeping the nation, affecting several states, including Idaho and Kentucky. Some say this wave is a backlash to anti-discrimination legislation passed for LGBTQ employment and housing, and others attribute it to our current political climate with an administration actively working to attack and erase LGBTQ people and other vulnerable communities. We will not stand by without speaking out or standing up for the health, freedom, and rights of all people. Kentucky is facing four proposed bills, while Idaho is currently facing three proposed anti-trans bills.
Trans Youth Singled Out in Idaho
Last week, the Idaho legislature introduced a number of bills targeting and discriminating against the transgender community. HB 509 would make it illegal for transgender people to change the gender marker on their birth certificate and HB 500 would limit transgender athletes’ participation in high school sports. Both bills are based off misinformation and are meant to discriminate against the transgender community. This is all on top of HB 465, which would criminalize doctors who provide gender-affirming medical care to transgender people, including surgery, puberty blockers, and hormone treatments. These three bills are among the cruelest attacks on transgender people in the country.
Mistie Tolman, Idaho State Director for Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest, added that conservative Idaho legislators, have drafted thousands of pages of administrative rules that were voted down, in part because the legislature didn't like the gender marker rule.
“Extra anti-trans rhetoric is happening in states across the nation,” explained Tolman.
Tolman reports that PPVNH is focusing on lobbying hard to committee chairs and communicating the extensive damage that introducing and passing anti-trans legislation would cause.
An anti-trans bill, similar to the one introduced in Idaho, recently died in South Dakota following six years of work by legislators. According to Human Rights Watch, other states are also pursuing anti-trans legislation. Lawmakers in Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, South Carolina, and Texas are considering similar bills in 2020 to prevent trans youth from accessing gender-affirming care.
“The Slate of Hate” in Kentucky
“The Slate of Hate” – that’s what they’re calling it. It’s the wave of anti-trans legislation springing up in Idaho, Texas, Tennessee, Missouri, Florida, Illinois, Oklahoma, Colorado, South Carolina, South Dakota, New Hampshire, Ohio and Kentucky.
Kentucky’s four anti-trans bills are part of it.
They include House Bill 321, which would criminalize clinicians as felons for providing gender affirming care to youth, House Bill 132, in which public schools could bar trans students from using restrooms and locker rooms contingent with their gender, Senate Bill 114, which would restrict trans youth from competing on sports teams contingent with their gender, and Senate Bill 90, which could allow providers the right to refuse care to any patient based on their religious beliefs.
And, while Kentucky’s Senate Bill 90 may have been crafted with denying care to trans people in mind, it could be applied to a variety of situations, making the discrimination possibilities endless.
Tamarra Wieder, Public Affairs and Policy Director at PPINK, explained these bills represent a common occurrence in the commonwealth’s legislature: “copycat legislation.”
In response to the anti-trans wave beginning in South Dakota, Kentucky has jumped on the bandwagon of targeting trans youth and their families.
The Fairness Campaign, Kentucky’s premiere LGBTQ advocacy organization, is heading up the fight against these discriminatory bills.
“As a leader in the health care community, we are poised to provide allied support [to the Fairness Campaign] in the fight against anti-LGBTQ bills,” said Wieder.
Planned Parenthood Supports Transgender Rights Because…
- LGBTQ rights and reproductive rights are linked, and we must lift up both to achieve justice for all.
- Politicians don’t get to decide what you do with your body, what your family looks like, or what your rights look like based on the state you live in.
- Everyone deserves quality, nonjudgmental, inclusive health care.