Anti-Trans Legislation and Discrimination

I am aware of anti-trans legislation and discrimination that is happening nationally and in Ohio. I feel it is important for me to share because as an organization we have worked hard through our Affirm Me program to elevate the needs of LGBTQ+ young people and their families. As well March 31 is International Transgender Visibility Day and reminded me how important sharing information and discussing these important issues is at Kinnect.

In Ohio there is a bill (HB 454) that bans affirming health care for trans and non-binary minors. This bill should it pass would interfere with healthcare for youth/minors experiencing Gender Dysphoria and would ban Medicaid and Private Insurers from covering the cost of treatments for youth. Here is information about the bill HB454 ​and information from Columbia University about why trans- affirming care saves lives.

​Currently in Texas, officials have begun investigating parents of transgender adolescents for possible child abuse. Texas Governor Greg Abbott directed the state’s Department of Family and Protective Services to handle certain medical treatments for trans youth as possible crimes. Banning affirming mental and medical care for minors (or criminalizing parents for accessing gender affirming health care with their child) goes against the recommended medical advice and would harm the mental and physical well-being of LGBTQ+ youth, especially transgender and non-binary youth. Gender-affirming medical care is recommended for transgender youth by the American Academy of Pediatricians and the Endocrine Society and by the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) and the American Psychiatric Association (APA) as evidence-based patient care.

Our Affirm Me team and partners have experienced first-hand the necessity and enormous benefits linking young people to this type of care has on their mental and physical health and well-being. We are encouraged by the support and commitment to the LGBTQ+ youth by the many affirming organizations within Ohio that are speaking out against Ohio House Bill 454. We are also encouraged by the Childrens Bureau recently published new federal guidance on supporting LGBTQ+ youth.

Shannon Deinhart
Executive Director