OAN Geraldyn Berry
UPDATED 12:51 PM – Tuesday, May 2, 2023
Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt has joined at least 15 other states by outlawing any sex reassignment operations for minors in the state, including irreversible gender change surgeries and hormone therapy.
SB 613 states that it is illegal for healthcare professionals to provide minors under the age of 18 gender surgery, hormone dosages that prevent or postpone natural puberty, or medications that inhibit the onset of puberty. Additionally, it forbids the use of any drugs or surgical procedures for gender transition.
Infringers risk having their medical licenses revoked or being subject to legal lawsuits from their parents or guardians.
At least 16 states have now enacted laws restricting or banning gender surgery for minors including Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, South Dakota and West Virginia.
When the ban was first proposed, Lambda Legal, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the ACLU of Oklahoma committed themselves to “defend[ing] the rights of transgender youth in court” in the event that it became a law.
“Transgender youth in Oklahoma deserve the support and care necessary to give them the same chance to thrive as their peers. Gender-affirming care is a critical part of helping transgender adolescents succeed, establish healthy relationships with their friends and family, live authentically as themselves, and dream about their futures,” they said.
Stitt (R-Okla.) passed legislation last year that forbade transgender women and girls from participating on women’s sports teams and also banned transgender kids from using toilets in schools that are appropriate for their gender identification.
“Last year, I called for a statewide ban on all irreversible gender transition surgeries and hormone therapies on minors so I am thrilled to sign this into law today and protect our kids,” Stitt said in a statement released after the signing. “We cannot turn a blind eye to what’s happening across our nation, and as governor I am proud to stand up for what’s right and ban life-altering transition surgeries on children in the state of Oklahoma.”
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