Arkansas becomes first state to ban trans surgery, puberty blockers for minors

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It seems like banning disfiguring medical treatments for youths who aren’t sure what sex they want to be would be a no-brainer, but states are actually having to take a stand to protect young people.

Arkansas just became the first, passing a bill to ban gender-adjusting medical treatment for youths who consider themselves “transgender,” reports KARK.

The Safe Act would prohibit doctors from treating transgender minors with puberty blockers as well as hormone and transition-related therapies. It would also forbid doctors from making treatment referrals.

The word “SAFE” in the title of the act stands for “save adolescents from experimentation” and bans trans youth from being given any type of gender reassignment treatment. It passed in the state Senate by a vote of 28 to 7, and in the House 70 to 22. It is now awaiting Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s signature.

Parents, pediatricians, and the public are divided over the Safe Act, since there is a pervasive belief that children should be able to irreversibly change their physiology based on trends and fads being loudly discussed on social media.

Pediatricians are taking both sides of the issue. One who opposes the legislation says it will stop doctors from providing the best care for kids in the state — “best care” being allowing them to change their bodies to fit their feelings.

“Part of my job as a general pediatrician is to coordinate that care. I never imagined that it could one day be illegal for me to refer one of my patients to appropriate care,” explained Arkansas Pediatrician Dr. Natalie Burr.

Other opponents of the bill include the American Academy of Pediatrics. The group’s president calling the measure “discrimination by legislation” saying it would politicize medical care.

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