A Cobb County state representative is drafting legislation that would make it a felony for medical professionals to medically aid minors who wish to gender transition, reported the AJC.
If the law were to be passed, Georgia medical providers would be prohibited from performing gender-affirming surgeries or prescribing hormone therapy medications. The punishment would be a felony charge.
State Rep. Ginny Ehrhart, R-Powder Springs, is drafting the legislation, she says, to protect children from irreversible procedures. Currently, minors are able to receive surgery or medication with a parent’s consent.
“We’re talking about children that can’t get a tattoo or smoke a cigar or a cigarette in the state of Georgia but can be castrated and get sterilized,” she said.
“This legislation would criminalize decisions that are made carefully within families in consultation with medical professionals and mental health professionals,” said Jeff Graham, the executive director of Georgia Equality. “Supporting children in recognizing their gender identity is not only humane, it saves lives and strengthens families.”
Under the legislation, procedures that would be prohibited for minors include “mastectomy, vasectomy, castration, and other forms of genital mutilization” and banned medications include “puberty-blocking drugs to stop or delay normal puberty and cross-sex hormone therapy.”
Ehrhart said the bill was motivated by a battle between parents in Texas, the mother of which supports their 7-year-old child’s male to female transition, whereas the father says the child “acts like a boy” around him and that his ex-wife was forcing the child to transition.
According to Ehrhart, language could be included in the bill to also punish the minor’s parents.