Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Good Media

We get a lot of bad press but once in a while we get good press coverage.
Scores of bills in US states aim to block medical treatments for trans youth. But research shows that these bans could have dire consequences.
By Grace Huckins
July 19, 2022

IN THE MIDST of a slew of anti-trans legislation proposed earlier this year, Spencer Cox, the Republican governor of Utah, made an impassioned plea to his state’s legislature as he tried to veto a bill that would bar trans youth from competing in girls’ sports. “I want them to live,” he wrote of the trans athletes in his state, in reference to the astronomical rates of suicide attempts among the trans community. Multiple surveys have estimated that about 40 percent of trans people may attempt suicide in their lifetimes; among the general public, this figure is around 5 percent.

But despite the governor’s veto attempt, the Utah bill passed, as have a few across the country that ban gender-affirming medical care for kids and teens. Many other such bills are currently in the works. These treatments—principally drugs that delay the onset of puberty, and hormone treatments such as testosterone and estrogen—help trans people achieve the bodies and appearances that feel right to them. Experts worry that the bans will have catastrophic effects. “Youth will die,” says Dallas Ducar, CEO of Transhealth Northampton, a medical center in Western Massachusetts that provides gender-affirming health care services.
There are political forces working to send the opposite message. On June 15, the Biden White House issued an executive order directing the administration to safeguard LGBTQ health care access—and, specifically, to work to prevent suicide. But the order doesn’t just focus on medical care: It also aims to support queer student well-being in schools, broaden access to family counseling, and reduce LGBTQ homelessness, among a slew of other goals.

To experts like Turban and Ducar, an expansive approach is exactly what is needed—not simply to prevent deaths, but also to encourage trans youth to lead happy, fulfilling lives. Achieving that goal means offering them access to appropriate mental health care, ensuring that they know they are supported, and publicly and emphatically speaking out against anti-trans hate. “We should not be striving, as a health care community, just to reduce suicidality,” Ducar says. “Keeping someone safe is the bare minimum.”
I think many trans people have seen what early intervention can do to trans children, how their quality of life improves. Stopping puberty and giving time for the child to make an informed decision. It is when puberty is allowed to run rampant that the microaggression and discrimination begins.

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