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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Arkansas Passes Bill Banning Transgender Surgeries For Minors

'The governor will review the bill more closely, listen to the debate, study it, and make a decision on the legislation...'

Arkansas became the first state to pass a bill banning doctors from performing gender reassignment surgeries, hormonal treatments or other biologically-altering procedures on minor children.

The Save Adolescents From Experimentation Act passed the state Senate in a 28-7 vote this week after it passed the state House earlier this month. It now heads to Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s desk.

The bill would prohibit medical professionals from offering gender-changing treatment to transgender minors. They also would be unable to refer minors to other providers for treatment. If they violate the law, medical professionals could be fined and lose their medical licenses.

It is unclear if Hutchinson plans to sign the bill, but he has shown support for other bills focusing on transgender children.

“The governor will review the bill more closely, listen to the debate, study it, and make a decision on the legislation,” spokeswoman Katie Beck said in a statement.

He has five days to either send the bill back to the legislature or sign it into law.

Just last week, Hutchinson signed a bill barring biological males from participating in female sporting events. The law now requires student-athletes to participate in sporting events that coincide with their biological genders. 

“This law simply says that female athletes should not have to compete in a sport against a student of the male sex when the sport is designed for women’s competition,” Hutchinson said in a statement.

“As I have stated previously, I agree with the intention of this law,” he added. “This will help promote and maintain fairness in women’s sporting events.”

Earlier this year, Mississippi’s Republican governor signed a similar bill into law, and at least 20 other state legislatures are currently considering legislation addressing the issue.

Several other Republican-led states, including Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, and dozens more, are also considering bills that would prohibit doctors from performing invasive procedures on and administering puberty-blockers to minor children.

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