FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 19th, 2022
Contact: [email protected]
Legislation Seeking to Ban Affirming Care Targets Already Vulnerable Ohio Youth with Medical Misinformation for Political Gain:
Columbus– (May 19th) This morning, the House Families, Aging, and Human Services Committee held a second hearing on House Bill 454, which would ban gender affirming care for minors in the state of Ohio, for proponent testimony. “We are disappointed to see this dangerous, anti-fact legislation waste more of our legislature’s time and taxpayers’ money,” said Alana Jochum, Executive Director at Equality Ohio. “Study after study has shown that gender affirming care to be safe, effective, and supported by all major medical associations. Legislation like HB 454 pedals false and misleading information about transgender young people and further stigmatizes an already marginalized group and their families.”
Gender affirming care is any medical or mental health care that affirms someone’s gender identity. While some gender affirming care is medical, most gender affirming care focuses on someone’s social transition, which is the process of changing their name, pronouns, or gender expression to match their identity, and is completely reversible. The process of medical intervention for affirming care, especially of minors, is always overseen by a physician, a mental health professional, and their family.
Legislation like HB 454 is an extreme government overreach into the personal lives of Ohioans and their families. It removes parental rights and access to safe, effective health care. This legislation denies Ohio families safe treatment options, leaving them to either go without treatment or worse, potentially turn to harmful and disproven conversion “therapy” services. Treatment options that focus on changing someone’s sexual orientation or gender idenity are cruel and are outlawed in 20 states across the country. This puts already vulnerable LGBTQ+ youth in a dangerous and difficult situation in the state of Ohio.
We know that legislation like HB 454 is being used for political gain by politicians seeking to win elections at the expense of already marginalized youth. These laws are funded and introduced by extreme right-wing special interest groups and are not representative of the views of the people of Ohio. This legislation is dangerous, and we commit to ensuring this bill does not move forward.