As your representative, I am committed to ensuring the well-being and future of our children. The ‘Help Not Harm’ bill, which I voted in favor of, is a crucial step in protecting minors from irreversible and potentially harmful gender transition procedures. Here are the key aspects of this legislation:
Protecting Our Young: This bill is central to our mission to safeguard minors from irreversible gender transition procedures, including puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries. These procedures can have life-altering effects, including risks of sterility and mental health issues.
Focused Approach: I want to clarify that this bill does not impose a blanket ban on transgender healthcare, such as mental health services, etc. It is specifically designed to restrict gender transition procedures for individuals under eighteen.
Specific Provisions of the Bill:
- It prohibits healthcare professionals from knowingly providing gender transition procedures to minors.
- It allows minors currently undergoing treatment to continue.
- It ensures exceptions for medically necessary services.
Under this bill, the South Carolina Medicaid Program will not reimburse or cover gender transition procedures for individuals under twenty-six years of age. It also bans the use of public funds for gender-affirming care for minors.
Enforcement and Discipline:
The bill empowers appropriate licensing boards to carry out disciplinary actions against healthcare professionals who violate these provisions. In addition, a physician who knowingly performs genital gender reassignment surgery is guilty of inflicting great bodily injury upon a child.
I stand by this legislation as a means to protect our most vulnerable population – our children. It is my duty to uphold our shared values and ensure the long-term health and safety of our community’s youth.