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Florida law on transgender children rejected

Photo: Getty Images via iStock The judge ruled that transgender people are entitled to the lawful treatment they need.

A federal judge on Tuesday struck down a 2023 Florida law that blocked gender-affirming care for transgender minors and severely restricted such treatment for adults, calling the law unconstitutional.

Senior Judge Robert Hinkle said the state went too far in barring transgender minors from being prescribed puberty blockers and hormone treatments courtesy of their parents.

It also blocked the state from requiring transgender adults to receive treatment only from a doctor and not a registered nurse or other qualified professional. Additionally, it prevented a ban on online treatment for transgender adults.

The judge ruled that transgender people are constitutionally entitled to the rightful treatment they are entitled to. need and, quoting the late Rev. Martin Luther King, he compared those who oppose it to those who were once against equality for minorities and women.

“Some transgender opponents invoke religion to support their position, just as some once invoked religion to support their racism or misogyny,” Justice Hinkle wrote in his 105-page decision.

“Opponents are of course free to maintain their beliefs, but they are not free to discriminate against these people simply because they are transgender. “Over time, discrimination against transgender people will decrease, just as racism and misogyny have decreased,” he continued.

The Republican Governor's Office Ron DeSantis blasted the decision, calling it “wrong.” He pledged to appeal.

“Through elected officials, the people of Florida acted to protect the children of this state and the Court has was wrong to ignore these wishes,” he said in a press release.

“As we have seen here in Florida, the UK and across Europe, there is no quality evidence to support the chemical and physical mutilation of children. These procedures cause permanent damage that affects children's lives. History will remember this fashion with horror,” added Mr. DeSantis.

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Relieved parents

Those who sued the State celebrated the decision. This is the case of Lucien Hamel, a transgender adult.

“I am so relieved that the court found that there is no medical basis for this law; it was passed just to target transgender people like me and try to drive us out of Florida,” he claimed.

“This is my house . I have lived here all my life. This is my son's house. I can’t just uproot my family and move across the country. The state does not have the right to interfere in people’s private medical decisions. I am relieved to once again be able to get the health care I need here in Florida. »

“This decision means I won't have to watch my daughter suffer needlessly because she can't get the care she needs,” commented the mother of one of the children who filed the lawsuit.

“Seeing Susan’s fear about this ban was one of the most difficult experiences we have endured as parents. She was identified in court documents only as Jane Doe and her daughter as Susan Doe to protect their privacy. All we wanted was to eliminate that fear and help her continue to be the happy, confident child she is now. »

At trial, Florida lawyers acknowledged that the state cannot prevent someone from seeking a transgender identity, but it can regulate medical care.

For minors, the only treatments involved are those blocking puberty and cross-sex hormones: giving testosterone to a person born as woman, for example.

Those who were receiving treatment when the law was passed in May 2023 were allowed to continue it. Surgery, rare among minors, was still blocked.

For adults, treatment was still authorized, but could only be carried out by a doctor instead of a registered nurse or other professional. The patient had to sign a consent form in person while in the same room as the doctor, meaning treatment could not be carried out via video call or online – which is not normally required with other medical procedures.

Violators could be criminally charged and medical providers could lose their license.

At least 25 states have passed laws restricting or banning gender-affirming medical care for transgender minors, and most of them face lawsuits.

The only other ban found unconstitutional is that of the state of Arkansas, which appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals.

Defenders demand for the U.S. Supreme Court to block Tennessee's ban on gender-affirming care for minors.

Judges' orders temporarily block the enforcement of a ban in Montana and certain aspects of the ban in Georgia.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116