Thanks to the work of Education First Alliance and others, lawmakers are ready to take consideration of laws protecting children from dangerous treatments with an unknown safety profile.
Last week, it didn't seem like passing the Youth Protection Act to ban child sex change treatments was on the General Assembly's agenda. Legislators were busy passing the Fairness in Womens' Sports Act, pushing the measure to the back burner.
Then, last Monday, EFA held its "Day of Action" which included a phone banking event for legislators and a press conference in Greenville to brief the community on child sex change clinics at ECU, UNC, and Duke. The event was meant to increase awareness of the issue and encourage legislators to take action to protect children by prohibiting the use of puberty blockers, hormone treatments, and surgeries for gender transition.
This morning, House Republicans moved the issue of banning child sex change treatments to the front burner.
The Health Committee passed the Senate's Medical Treatment for Minors Act that will cut off state and local funding to institutions that provide hormone therapy and psychiatric services aimed at “transitioning” children.
The bill will also require children to be evaluated by licensed child psychiatrists and refer to independent physicians outside their networks.
Representative Tim Reeder, an ECU doctor from Greenville, introduced the bill as a way to protect children from “potentially life-altering treatments.” He spoke about the troubling data coming from clinics in Europe and said that the treatments are experimental and thus, should not be supported by taxpayers.
During the public comment session, Prisha Mosley testifies about her experience receiving sex change treatments and surgeries as a minor. She said the treatments likely left her infertile and with a permanently deep voice.
“I am haunted by the ghosts of missing body parts and suffer from chronic pain and a host of additional medical issues and psychological and emotional anguish,” Mosley told the committee.
If the bill passes, children and parents would be required to sign strongly worded disclaimers that point out the dangers of child sex change procedures:
"The use of cross-sex hormones in males is associated with numerous health risks, such as thromboembolic disease, including, without limitation, blood clots; cholelithiasis, including gallstones; coronary artery disease, including, without limitation, heart attacks; macroprolactinoma, which is a tumor of the pituitary gland; cerebrovascular disease, including, without limitation, strokes; hypertriglyceridemia, which is an elevated level of triglycerides in the blood; breast cancer; and irreversible infertility.
The law will allow child sex changes for minors at privately-funded intuitions but with enhanced protections.
The bill now goes to the House rules committee for consideration.
A second bill - House Bill 808 - would prohibit gender transition surgery for minors. The Senate health care committee will hear the bill tomorrow at 10 a.m.