White House Calls Alabama’s Bill Banning Gender Surgery for Transgender Kids ‘Discriminatory’

Melanie Arter | April 8, 2022 | 2:21pm EDT
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White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki speaks during a briefing in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC, on February 23, 2022. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki speaks during a briefing in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC, on February 23, 2022. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) - The White House said a bill approved by Alabama lawmakers that bans what it calls “gender-affirming health care” for transgender youth - hormone therapy, puberty blockers, and genital surgery - is “discriminatory.”

On Thursday, the Alabama state legislature passed a bill that would make it a Class C felony for doctors to prescribe such medical treatments to transgender kids, including genital surgery except for circumcision. The ban does not apply to children with sexual development disorders. If convicted, doctors face up to 10 years behind bars.

“Across the country, as we’ve talked about a bit in here, Republican elected officials are engaging in a disturbing, cynical trend of attacking vulnerable transgender kids for purely partisan, political reasons,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Thursday.


“Today in Alabama, instead of focusing on critical kitchen-table issues like the economy, COVID, or addressing the country’s mental health crisis, Republican lawmakers are currently debating legislation that, among many things, would target trans youth with tactics that threatens to put pediatricians in prison if they provide medically necessary, lifesaving healthcare for the kids they serve,” she said.

“Just like the extreme government overreach we’ve seen in Texas, where politicians have sent state officials into the homes of loving parents to investigate them for abuse — just to harass and intimidate the LGBTQI+ community — today’s vote in Alabama will only serve to harm kids,” the press secretary said.

“But Alabama’s lawmakers and other legislators who are contemplating these discriminar- — discriminatory bills have been put on notice by the Department of Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services that laws and policies preventing care that healthcare professionals recommend for transgender minors may violate the Constitution and federal law,” Psaki said.

“To be clear, every major medical association agrees that gender-affirming healthcare for transgender kids is a best practice and potentially lifesaving,” the press secretary said.

“All of this begs an important question: What are these policies actually trying to solve for?  LGBTQI+ people can’t be erased or forced back into any closets, and kids across our nation should be allowed to be who they are without the threat that their parents or their doctor could be imprisoned simply for helping them and loving them,” she said.

“President Biden has committed in both words and actions to fight for all Americans and will not hesitate to hold these states accountable,” Psaki said.

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