Arkansas legislature passes ban on gender-transitioning for children

Andrii Zastrozhnov/Shutterstock

Washington D.C., Mar 31, 2021 / 08:23 am (CNA).- Arkansas is set to ban gender-transitioning procedures for children, including the use of cross-sex hormones, surgeries, and puberty-blocking drugs.

The Arkansas Senate voted 28-7 on Monday to pass House Bill 1570, known as the “To Create The Arkansas Save Adolescents From Experimentation (SAFE) Act.” The bill has not yet been signed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R), but he is expected to sign it into law.

The bill states that “A physician or other healthcare professional shall not provide gender transition procedures to any individual under eighteen (18) years of age,” and that “A physician, or other healthcare professional shall not refer any individual under eighteen (18) years of age to any healthcare professional for gender transition procedures.”

The SAFE Act describes gender transition procedures as cross-sex hormonal treatments, surgeries including mastectomies and vaginoplasties, and drugs that are prescribed with the intent of stopping or delaying puberty in a pre-pubescent child.

Further, the bill also bans the use of public funding of gender transition procedures of children under the age of 18. Insurance companies in Arkansas will not be required to cover gender transition procedures, nor will they be allowed to cover the gender transition of a minor.

Chase Strangio, who is the deputy director for transgender justice for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), referred to the SAFE Act as “the single most extreme anti-trans law to ever pass through a state legislature” and said that this legislation and similar bills are “potentially genocidal” for trans-identified people.

On its Twitter account, the ACLU claimed on Monday that “Arkansas has become the first state to ban health care for trans youth,” and that “our rights and lives are under attack.” While the legislation banned gender-transitioning for children, it did not apply to general health care procedures for youth identifying as transgender.

“This is one domino we cannot let fall,” the ACLU tweeted on Tuesday evening.

Last week, Arkansas became the second state to ban biological males who identify as female from competing on sports teams for women and girls.

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

On Wednesday, President Biden tweeted on the International Transgender Day of Visibility, saying that “Transgender rights are human rights — and I’m calling on every American to join me in uplifting the worth and dignity of transgender Americans. Together, we can stamp out discrimination and deliver on our nation’s promise of freedom and equality for all.”

If you value the news and views Catholic World Report provides, please consider donating to support our efforts. Your contribution will help us continue to make CWR available to all readers worldwide for free, without a subscription. Thank you for your generosity!

Click here for more information on donating to CWR. Click here to sign up for our newsletter.

1 Comment

  1. Bravo to Arkansas for protecting children. Until one is an ADULT, NO physical surgeries should be permitted to transgender. Children have no idea of what they are saying 90% of the time. They want to be astronauts and unicorns and it is beyond irresponsible to sexually mutilate them when they cant possibly know what they want. The fact that there is a roughly 50% suicide rate among trans people should tell you something. Kindly put, they are either confused or ill. Society should NOT be encouraging surgical “solutions ” to this issue for children. Arkansas, thanks for showing us common sense in action. Lets hope it spreads to the rest of the country.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

All comments posted at Catholic World Report are moderated. While vigorous debate is welcome and encouraged, please note that in the interest of maintaining a civilized and helpful level of discussion, comments containing obscene language or personal attacks—or those that are deemed by the editors to be needlessly combative or inflammatory—will not be published. Thank you.