Louisiana passes bill to ban child sex changes, overrides governor's veto

The veto was overridden in the Senate on a 28-11 vote and in the House on a 75-23 vote.

Katie Daviscourt Seattle WA
Sex changes for minors will now be banned in the state of Louisiana after the Republican-controlled legislature overturned a veto from Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards on Tuesday.

House Bill 684, which will take effect on January 1, 2024, "prohibits certain procedures to alter the sex of a minor child" in the state of Louisiana and revokes the licenses and certificates of any healthcare professionals who violate the ban for a minimum of two years.

The veto was overridden in the Senate on a 28-11 vote and in the House on a 75-23 vote, according to the Louisiana Illuminator.

The ACLU of Louisiana released a statement condemning the veto as "extreme government overreach" and "a direct threat to the civil liberties."

"Lawmakers who voted to overturn Governor Edwards' veto of House Bill 648 have chosen to sacrifice the health and safety of Louisiana’s transgender children and undermine the rights of their parents,” the ACLU of Louisiana said. "This is extreme government overreach and a direct threat to the civil liberties and constitutional rights of all Louisianans. We condemn today’s override of HB648, and we will never stop fighting to protect the rights of transgender youth and their families.”

Furthermore, Gov. Edwards slammed the veto in a statement following the vote on Tuesday and asserted that the bill would be deemed "unconstitutional" and thrown out in court, the outlet reports.

"The first time I was overridden, on the Congressional district map, I said the bill was illegal and I expected the courts would throw it out. The courts have done so," Edwards said. "Today, I was overridden for the second time, on my veto of a bill that needlessly harms a very small population of vulnerable children, their families and their health care professionals. I expect the courts to throw out this unconstitutional bill, as well."

The Bill, which was introduced by House state rep. Gabe Firment, received tremendous bi-partisan support before it was killed in the Senate committee and then vetoed by Gov. Edwards.

During the vote to override the veto, Democratic Reps. Roy Daryl Adams of Jackson, Robby Carter of Amite, Chad Brown of Plaquemines, Mack Cormier of Belle Chasse, C. Travis Johnson of Vidalia, Dustin Miller of Opelousas and Sens. Katrina Jackson of Monroe and Greg Tarver of Shreveport, voted with Republicans, according to the outlet.

Chloe Cole, a prominent figure that speaks out on her regret of getting a sex change as a minor, praised the state legislature for overriding the veto in a post on Twitter.

"I started my battle against medically transitioning children over a year ago. The first state I shared my story with was Louisiana. Last year, Louisiana tried to ban talk therapy for kids with GD. As of today, Louisiana has done a full 180 and has now placed age restrictions that prevent what happened to me from happening to any child in the south," Cole wrote. "To The Louisiana Legislature, thank you so much for listening to my cautionary tale."

More than twenty bills aimed at criminalizing child sex changes were introduced at the beginning of the 2023 state legislative sessions. Republican state lawmakers are seeking to ban so-called gender-affirming care for youth due to the lack of quality evidence to support it, the invasive and irreversible nature of the interventions, and the rising rates of detransition and regret. During this year's legislative session, more than 16 states have enacted laws that ban gender-affirming care for minors.

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