(Tony Sifert, Headline USA) The Texas Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that state investigations of parents and doctors who mutilate children with puberty blockers, reassignment surgeries, and other forms of “gender-affirming care” may continue, according to NPR.
The case stems from Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott‘s Feb. 22 order, which directed the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to investigate as “child abuse” an assortment of medical and surgical “gender-transitioning procedures.”
“Beyond the obvious harm of permanently sterilizing a child, these procedures and treatments can cause side effects and harms beyond permanent infertility,” wrote Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in an opinion which accompanied Abbott’s action.
While the Texas Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling preventing the DFPS from investigating the plaintiffs in the case, it overturned an appellate ruling which enjoined the agency from any similar investigation statewide.
Justice Jimmy Blacklock, an Abbott appointee, argued in his ruling that, while the DFPS may investigate instances of “gender-affirming care,” the governor has no authority to require the DFPS to follow his order.
“Unlike some executive orders of the Governor that are afforded binding legal effect by statute, the Governor’s letter cites no legal authority that would empower the Governor to bind state agencies with the instruction contained in the letter’s final sentence,” Justice Blacklock wrote.
Both sides claimed victory in the aftermath of the ruling.
“The Texas Supreme Court made clear that the attorney general and governor do not have the authority to order DFPS to take any action against families that support their children by providing them with the highest standards of medical care,” the ACLU and Lambda Legal wrote in a statement.
Just secured a win for families against the gender ideology of doctors, big pharma, clinics trying to “trans” confused, innocent children. SCOTX green-lighted investigations that lower Dem courts froze
“Transing” kids through surgery/drugs is abuse & I’ll do all I can to stop it
— Attorney General Ken Paxton (@KenPaxtonTX) May 13, 2022
“SCOTX green-lighted investigations that lower Dem courts froze ‘Transing’ kids through surgery/drugs is abuse.'”