A judge in Missouri has ruled to allow a ban on transgender surgeries and treatments for minors to take effect in the state. The ruling prohibits health care providers from performing such procedures on minors starting from August 30. Minors who had already started hormone treatments prior to this date will be allowed to continue, but new patients will not have access to these treatments.
The law also prevents transgender inmates from receiving these procedures. Physicians who violate the law risk losing their licenses and facing prosecution from patients. The law is set to expire in August 2027. The judge justified the ruling by stating that the evidence surrounding gender treatments is conflicting and unclear, and the plaintiffs’ arguments were not likely to succeed.
Supporters of the law argue that these medical treatments are unsafe and untested. Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey’s office celebrated the ruling, stating that Missouri is the first state to successfully defend a law preventing child mutilation. Over 20 states have enacted similar legislation, though some of these laws have not yet taken effect or have been stayed by courts. Many of the laws restrict transgender minors’ access to hormone therapies, puberty blockers, and transition surgeries.
Meanwhile, in Texas, a state district judge issued a different ruling, siding with families who argue that a ban on transgender treatments would violate parents’ rights and harm transgender children who need medical care. However, the state has appealed to the Texas Supreme Court, thankfully putting the lower court’s decision on hold for now.