Louisiana's GOP-dominated state legislature, boasting a veto-proof majority, has recently approved a bipartisan bill that seeks to prohibit transgender hormone treatments, puberty blockers, and surgeries for minors.
Notably, several Democrats also lent their support to this measure. Although Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards may potentially veto the bill, the state legislature possesses the capacity to easily override such a decision.
The bill’s sponsor, Republican state representative Gabe Firment, said in a statement, “The people of Louisiana have made it clear that our children are worth fighting for.” The bill received supporting votes from several Democrats, the National Review reports.
Proponents of the legislation contend that its primary objective is to shield children from potentially hazardous, unneeded, and unverified medical interventions. Detractors, on the other hand, assert that the bill deprives transgender youth of essential care and may have adverse effects on their overall well-being.
Should the bill be enacted, Louisiana will align itself with 17 other states that have implemented comparable limitations on the procedures and medications utilized in the process of gender transition for minors. These legislative measures are part of a wider endeavor by conservative policymakers to regulate an industry and interest group that operates with limited oversight and possesses substantial political influence.
Aside from the prohibition on sex-change surgeries and hormone treatments, legislators in Louisiana have passed bills that impose restrictions on educators, preventing them from engaging in discussions about non-educational subjects such as gender identity and sexual orientation.
Additionally, the bills stipulate that, for all official records, students should be identified based on their sex assigned at birth.