The Arkansas Senate today passed HB1570, a bill that would restrict all transgender minors access to gender-affirming treatment.
This involves reversible puberty blockers and hormones, according to NBC News, making it the first state to do so. This bill is one of two forms of legislation being debated in the United States. Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee have all enacted laws banning trans youth athletes from participating in sports consistent with their gender identity.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) used its Twitter account to speak out against the bill before it was passed. The bill, according to Chase Strangio, the ALCU LGBT & HIV Project’s Deputy Director for Transgender Rights, is “the single most extreme anti-trans legislation to ever pass through a state legislature.” Chase also mentioned that trans people living in states where the legislation has been passed are concerned about what will happen in the coming months as more states become aware of the bill.
The ACLU is ready to continue fighting for transgender people’s rights. If the bills pass or other states pass similar laws, Chase told NBC News that the group intends to sue. Furthermore, the ACLU is urging supporters to take action by calling Governor Hutchinson and demanding that he veto the bill. Rumba Yamb, the Director of the trans support group ‘Intransitive,’ is ensuring that the ACLU is not fighting alone in this war. He also told NBC News that they will continue to war.
The bill will now go to Governor Asa Hutchinson for his signature, and unless he vetoes it, Arkansas will become the first state to outlaw gender-affirming treatment for trans youth.