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ACLU of Ohio to file lawsuit to stop gender-affirming care ban for trans youth

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ACLU of Ohio to file lawsuit to stop gender-affirming care ban for trans youth

Jan 30, 2024 | 4:55 am ET
By Megan Henry
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ACLU of Ohio to file lawsuit to stop gender-affirming care ban for trans youth
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Protestors rallying against an anti-transgender bill going into effect in Ohio. (Photo by WEWS.)

The ACLU of Ohio will file a lawsuit against banning gender-affirming care for transgender youth, the group announced Monday.

The Ohio House and Senate voted to override Gov. Mike DeWine’s veto of House Bill 68, which prohibits transgender youth from starting hormone therapy and puberty blockers. The law is set to take effect on April 23. HB 68 has a grandfather clause that would allow doctors who already started treatment on patients to continue. 

“We are preparing litigation to defend transgender youth and their constitutional right to receive medically necessary healthcare,” Freda Levenson, legal director at the ACLU of Ohio, said in a statement. “Transgender youth, together with their doctors and parents, should have access to evidence-based medical care just like anyone else. … HB 68 is not only cruel; it violates the Ohio Constitution and must be challenged.”

Gender-affirming care is supported by every major medical organization in the United States. Children’s hospitals across Ohio, the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, and the Ohio Academy of Family Physicians all opposed HB 68.

“We are prepared to go to court and defend the rights and dignity of transgender youth with every tool available,” Chase Strangio, deputy director for transgender justice at the ACLU, said in a statement.

Twenty-two other states have passed a law that bans gender affirming care for transgender youth, but most have faced legal challenges, according to the Human Rights Campaign

Federal appeals judges on the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Tennessee and Kentucky can continue banning gender-affirming care for trans youth while legal challenges against state laws continue. The 6th Circuit has jurisdiction over Ohio.  

Follow OCJ Reporter Megan Henry on X.