2/23/22: Press Release Texas House LGBTQ Caucus Statement on AG Opinion

Texas House LGBTQ Caucus Statement on Attorney General Opinion KP-0401

For Immediate Release Contact: Chesley Hinds
May 19, 2023 Office: 512-463-0613

(TEXAS) ⸺ Earlier this week, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a non-binding opinion suggesting that certain types of gender-affirming care for transgender children should be classified as “child abuse” under Texas law.

The Texas House LGBTQ Caucus issued the following statement: “This inaccurate and nonbinding opinion is the latest in an established pattern of attacks that Attorney General Ken Paxton has levied against innocent children and the families who love them. It demonstrates a blatant lack of understanding of gender-affirming care and represents an alarming dismissal of the input of countless credible medical professional organizations who have used science to establish evidence-based best practice medical care standards for transgender children.

Transgender youth deserve access to the life-saving, medically necessary care that they rely on. Additionally, private medical decisions should be kept between patients and their doctors, not negotiated by politicians threatening Texans’ fundamental right to bodily autonomy.

It is critical to note that this opinion does not carry the weight of the law and no government agency is obligated to act on the erroneous assertions it makes. This latest attack does, however, contribute to a dangerous campaign of misinformation and dehumanization targeting children who are already marginalized and who experience disproportionately higher rates of suicidal ideation compared to their cisgender peers. Statements like those made in the Attorney General’s opinion fuel fear, discrimination, and violence that threaten the lives of transgender, nonbinary, and gender-nonconforming children. This false rhetoric has produced a hostile environment in our state that has forced families to flee to protect their trans children, further negatively impacted the mental health of transgender kids, and perpetuated an ongoing epidemic of violence against trans Texans, especially Black transgender women.

We will continue to fight with Texas families to protect trans kids and to defend their rights to life, health, and happiness. Furthermore, we will continue to stand with the plethora of major medical professional organizations who have endorsed the prevailing, evidence-based standards of care for trans children. These include the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Pediatric Endocrine Society, the World Professional Association of Transgender Health, the National Association of Social Workers, and more. We demand that Attorney General Ken Paxton leave healthcare recommendations to medical professionals and end his politically motivated attacks on LGBTQIA+ Texans that endanger the lives of innocent children.”

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