BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Leaders in the Idaho Senate on Tuesday killed a House-approved bill prohibiting gender reassignment surgeries and gender-affirming health care such as puberty blockers and hormone therapy for minors.
The Republican Senate Majority Caucus in a statement said it strongly opposes gender reassignment for minors, but the legislation undermines parental rights and allows the government to interfere.
“We believe in parents’ rights and that the best decisions regarding medical treatment options for children are made by parents, with the benefit of their physician’s advice and expertise,” the statement said.
The senators also said the proposed law goes against the Idaho Medical Association, and it could be interpreted to extend into medically necessary care for kids.
The senators in the statement also said the Idaho Medical Association told them that gender-affirming surgery for transgender minors is outside generally accepted standards of care and is not being done by physicians in Idaho.
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The House voted 55-13 last week with no Democratic support to send the measure to the Senate. The proposed law said a violation would be a felony punishable by up to life in prison.
Backers said the measure was needed to prevent young people from going forward with decisions that will make them sterile.
The bill sought to amend an Idaho law outlawing female genital mutilation by also banning puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and sex reassignment surgeries when administered to children struggling with gender dysphoria.
Gender dysphoria is a conflict between a person’s physical or assigned gender and the gender with which they identify. It’s recognized by the American Medical Association, Endocrine Society, American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychiatric Association.
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