The legal tug of war over SB150 continues
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Part of the SB150 bans gender-affirming care for kids under 18. The preliminary injunction that was on that section was lifted on Friday.
That means, for the time being, puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones can’t be given to minors.
Critics of the law say this type of care is crucial for transgender children. Supporters say it’s harmful.
Both sides claim they’re looking out for trans youth.
The Kentucky ACLU calls puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones “medically necessary care,” and calls the decision “harmful, discriminatory, and egregious government overreach.”
David Walls, The Family Foundation Executive Director, calls it a win.
“It was completely appropriate and needed for the legislature to step in and stop these harmful interventions and medical experiments that are being done on children,” Walls said.
Walls claimed the provisions of SB150 are meant to protect children from bodily harm.
He also said The Family Foundation has compassion for anyone dealing with gender dysphoria, but feels they need mental health services instead of puberty blockers.
“We just firmly reject the idea that the appropriate way to help a child that’s struggling with coming to terms with the reality of who they were created to be in terms of their biological sex, is to put them on irreversible drugs,” he said.
“The idea that it’s irreversible is kind of a weird argument because nothing is actually changing,” Dr. Nina Wells said.
Wells is a licensed clinical social worker that works with transgender youth.
She called the puberty blockers “a pause button” that allows kids and teenagers time to figure things out.
“For trans youth, sometimes that dysphoria is so bad that it will lead to a suicide attempt, it will lead to self-harm, it will lead to poor self-esteem, to drug use, to homelessness, the list goes on,” Wells said.
Wells and Walls both agree that those with dysphoria deserve mental health support, but Wells said laws like this do more damage than good to their mental health.
“Just like social support is one of the most intense protective factors, it can also go the other way,” Wells said. “And when that social support isn’t there, and that can be parents, that can be peers, but it’s also the media, and it’s laws. It changes the quality of that person’s well-being.”
“There are 20 states now that have passed these provisions,” Walls said. “So I would argue that there’s a very strong sense here in the United States that we’re going to hopefully quickly see the end of these experiments on children.”
This legal battle is far from over.
The sixth circuit is expected to hear oral arguments and make a decision at the end of the year.
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