TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, the Senate voted to pass Senate Bill 254 (SB 254), a dangerous bill that will drastically threaten the lives of trans children in Florida and criminalize healthcare providers who provide medically safe and appropriate healthcare.
The ACLU of Florida opposes this bill and its companion bill, House Bill 1421.
Kara Gross, legislative director and senior policy counsel, responded to today’s vote with the following statement:
“SB 254 is an egregious attack on Florida children who have a right to safe healthcare just like anyone else. It is an extreme example of government overreach into private medical decisions that will inflict harm on individuals experiencing gender dysphoria and prevent them from accessing the health care they need.
“Parents, not politicians, know what is best for their own children.
“Parents should be free to access the healthcare they need for their children in consultation with their medical providers and without governmental interference. This bill takes away the right of parents to provide life-saving best, practice medical care to their own children.
“The bill sponsor says that it is necessary to ban puberty blockers and hormone therapy for minors experiencing gender dysphoria because of potential ‘long-term harms’ that could be caused. But under this bill, the exact same prescription medications can be provided to children experiencing early puberty. If these prescription medications were truly harmful, they wouldn’t be allowed for any minors. Obviously, that rationale is merely a convenient pretext for differential treatment.
“Politicians don’t get to decide which children get their medical needs met. All children deserve access to life-saving health care.”