On March 31, 2021, International Transgender Day of Visibility, GLMA condemns the spate of legislative attacks on healthcare for transgender youth in states across the US. GLMA President Scott Nass, MD, MPA, FAAFP, AAHIVS, and Executive Director Hector Vargas, JD, issued the following statement:
“Trans Day of Visibility is a day to honor the struggle, strength, and resilience of trans people, including many of GLMA’s members. There is so much trans visibility to celebrate this year, from the historic confirmation of HHS Assistant Secretary for Health Rachel Levine last week, to the statement issued by President Biden today recognizing the Trans Day of Visibility, a first for any US president.
“But just two days before Trans Day of Visibility, the Arkansas legislature became the first in the US to adopt a ban on gender-affirming care for trans youth. If signed into law, the ban would make it a felony for healthcare professionals to provide medically necessary, lifesaving care for trans youth. The Arkansas ban is one of over 80 bills introduced in state legislatures this year targeting trans youth in their rights to receive healthcare and participate in school activities such as sports.
“Let’s be clear: this is nothing less than an attack on the wellbeing, health, and lives of trans youth. These bills ignore and undermine the consensus of leading health professional associations, including GLMA, that providing gender-affirming care and allowing youth to live in accordance with their gender identities are best practices. We stand behind the science in condemning these medically unsubstantiated bills.
“There is a vital role for LGBTQ health professionals to play in fighting these attacks on trans dignity and lives. As lawmakers claim to speak for health professionals in order to attack trans people based on distorted science, GLMA encourages every health professional to use their voice and join us in setting the record straight so that trans youth can thrive. Trans communities deserve so much more than visibility. They deserve action.”