The Justice Department is warning states that blocking youth from receiving transgender treatment could violate U.S. law, arguing in a letter to attorneys general the restrictions are discriminatory.
“The Department of Justice is committed to ensuring that all children are able to live free from discrimination, abuse, and harassment,” Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke in the Civil Rights Division wrote in a statement Thursday. “Today’s letter reaffirms state and local officials’ obligation to ensure that their laws and policies do not undermine or harm the health and safety of children, regardless of a child’s gender identity.”
The letter comes on the Transgender Day of Visibility, according to Axios.
“Intentionally erecting discriminatory barriers to prevent individuals from receiving gender-affirming care implicates a number of federal legal guarantees,” Clarke wrote in the letter.
- Texas GOP Gov. Greg Abbott is being challenged in court on a law allowing state agencies to investigate parents for child abuse if they seek sex-change care.
- Idaho GOP Gov. Brad Little signed a bill Monday limiting the ability of transgender youth to play school sports.
- Alabama GOP Gov. Kay Ivey signed a law last year forcing student athletes to participate in school sports based on their biological sex at birth.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., the mother of a transgender child, is vowing to fight back against such laws, saying legislation “cannot wait any longer,” Axios reported.
Jayapal said the laws are “fueled by a cocktail of ignorance, transphobia, and malice for trans kids, their parents, and the doctors and the communities who want to help them.”
“These attacks on our children are precisely why we cannot wait any longer to enshrine protections for trans kids into federal law,” she added, Axios reported.
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