Business Insider 30 March 2021
Arkansas became the first state to pass a bill prohibiting doctors from providing gender-affirming medical care to transgender youth following a vote in the state Senate on Monday.
HB 1570, the “Save Adolescents From Experimentation (SAFE) Act,” prohibits trans youth from accessing health care and insurance coverage for gender-affirming care. The bill passed 28-7 in the state Senate. The state House passed the bill earlier this month.
The bill would prohibit doctors from offering gender-confirming hormone treatment or surgery to trans minors. Doctors would also be unable to refer minors to other providers for treatment.
The legislation now goes to Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s desk for signature. He has not publicly said whether he supports the legislation. The governor has five days, not including Sunday, to sign or veto the bill before it becomes law.
If signed, the bill would become the first in the nation to target trans health care. It would take effect this summer.
Opponents say if the legislation is enacted, it would be the first prohibition of its kind in the US. LGBTQ advocacy groups, child welfare organizations, and medical professionals have criticized the legislation.
Medical best practice guidelines from the Endocrine Society, Child Mind Institute, and American Psychological Association all recommend that states provide gender-affirming care for trans children.
READ MORE: https://www.businessinsider.com.au/arkansas-becomes-first-state-to-ban-healthcare-for-trans-youth-2021-3