Conservative lawmakers have passed a flurry of bills this year directed at transgender youth, including measures that bar classroom discussion of gender identity, block access to healthcare to help young people transition, and restrict participation in sports.
The Republican-sponsored legislation comes in the run-up to the 2022 midterm elections, with transgender rights emerging as a major front in the U.S. culture wars.
Here are some of the bills passed or enacted this year:
School sports bans
ARIZONA: Republican Governor Doug Ducey signed a law that bans transgender girls from playing on girls’ sports teams in public and private schools.
KENTUCKY: The legislature, overriding Democratic Governor Andy Beshear’s veto, enacted a law that bans trans women and girls from school sports teams in grades six through 12 and at Kentucky colleges and universities.
INDIANA: The Republican-led legislature overrode Republican Governor Eric Holcomb’s veto of a law banning transgender girls from female school sports teams. Holcomb, a Republican, vetoed the legislation in March for addressing a nonexistent problem.
IOWA: Republican Governor Kim Reynolds signed a bill requiring student athletes to join school sports team based on ‘sex at birth’ across public and private schools as well as in higher education.
KANSAS: Governor Laura Kelly’s veto of a bill to ban transgender women and girls from participating in school sports will stand. Proponents of the bill did not get the two-thirds majority needed in the state’s House of Representatives to overturn the Democratic governor’s veto, essentially killing the bill despite a vote by state senators to override that veto.
LOUISIANA: A bill prohibiting transgender girls and young women from joining girls’ school sports teams has gone to the desk of Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards, who has called the legislation unnecessary but has not said whether he will veto it. The bill applies to public schools, including colleges, and private schools that receive state funding.
OKLAHOMA: Republican Governor Kevin Stitt signed a bill banning transgender girls from participating and competing in girls’ school sports. The law also requires parents or guardians of student athletes under 18 to sign an affidavit ‘acknowledging the biological sex of the student at birth.’ read more
SOUTH DAKOTA: Governor Kristi Noem, a Republican, signed a bill prohibiting trans women and girls from playing on girls’ school sports teams.
SOUTH CAROLINA: Republican Governor Henry McMaster signed a bill banning transgender athletes from playing school sports that match their gender identity in public elementary schools, middle schools, high schools and colleges, as well as private school teams that compete against public schools.
TENNESSEE: Governor Bill Lee, a Republican, signed legislation extending last year’s law prohibiting transgender women and girls from female sports teams to apply to collegiate sports.
UTAH: Lawmakers voted to override Governor Spencer Cox’s veto on a bill banning transgender girls’ participation in girls’ sports teams in school. Cox, a Republican, called the bill a flawed measure in explaining his veto.
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey (left) and Texas Governor Greg Abbott (right) are among the conservative governors who have signed conservative bills into law
ARIZONA: Governor Ducey signed into law a bill banning physicians from performing ‘irreversible gender reassignment surgery’ on minors.
ALABAMA: Governor Kay Ivey, a Republican, signed into law a bill that would make it a felony for parents and healthcare professionals to provide transition-related medical care to minors, with a penalty of up to 10 years in prison. The law is being challenged in court.
TEXAS: Bypassing the legislative process, Republican Governor Greg Abbott issued an order to investigate parents who provide gender-affirming care to their transgender children. The order is currently being challenged in court. Other restrictions
FLORIDA: Republican Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill that bans any classroom conversation, including instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity for children in kindergarten through third grade, and says all teaching for grades four through 12 must be ‘age-appropriate,’ wording that is not defined in the bill. The law allows parents to sue school districts they believe to be in violation.
ALABAMA: Governor Ivey signed a bill requiring students in public schools to use bathrooms and changing rooms that match the gender on their original birth certificates. The measure also prohibits classroom discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in certain grades.
OKLAHOMA: Republican Governor Kevin Stitt signed into law a measure prohibiting nonbinary designation on birth certificates and limiting it to male or female. Oklahoma legislators passed a law prohibiting transgender and nonbinary students in public schools through high school from using multiple occupancy restrooms or changing areas that match their gender identity.