Georgia bill banning some transgender care for youth moves forward in House

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Georgia House lawmakers get first look at controversial gender-affirming care bill

Georgia House lawmakers got their first look at a controversial bill that passed in the senate last week. The proposed legislation deals with gender-affirming care for children.

At the Georgia State Capitol Tuesday, House lawmakers got their first look at a controversial bill that passed the Senate last week.

The proposed legislation would restrict gender-affirming care for children under 18.

Democrats are opposed to it, but the state House of Representatives Public Health Committee passed it in a party-line vote Tuesday.

"We don't want anyone to have gender surgeries under the age of 18-years-old," said the bill sponsor State Senator Carden Summer, a Republican from District 13.

Summers testified before the House Public Health Committee as they considered his bill which passed the Senate in a party-line vote last week.

The bill would ban most gender surgeries and hormone replacement therapies for kids under 18. Doctors would still be allowed to prescribe puberty blockers.

"The basic crux of this bill is simply to pause and allow young people to get a little bit more mature before they make a decision that is 100% irreversible," Summers said.

Despite facing opposition in the committee hearing, the bill passed 12 to 10.

One amendment was approved that gives a child the ability to sue if they later regret the procedure banned with this bill.

The vote upset transgender advocates and those who have already transitioned.

"This bill would not protect children it will do the opposite," one person against the bill said.

An 18-year-old spoke during the hearing Tuesday who transitioned as a child.

Opponents of the bill say it violates equal protection and overrides the decisions of doctors and parents.

"Healthcare decisions for my daughter should be between my husband and myself and our entire medical team," one mom said. "This bill would deny my daughter access to medical treatments like hormone replacement therapy that have been developed to help her, not harm her."

More than 50 people signed up to speak for and against the bill, but just a handful got the opportunity.

The bill now heads to the House Rules Committee and then the full House for consideration, but because there was an amendment it will have to head back to the Senate for approval before it will head to the governor’s desk if it is approved.