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Organizations Host ‘die In’ at Texas State Capitol to Protest Abbott’s Transgender Directive

For LGBTQ mental health support, call the Trevor Project’s 24/7 toll-free support line at (866) 488-7386. You can also reach a crisis counselor through the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling (800) 273-8255 or texting 741741.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Across the globe, Thursday marked the Transgender Day of Visibility, and organizations took to the Texas State Capitol to protest Texas leaders’ recent actions against transgender youth.

Last month, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a 13-page legal opinion, arguing certain gender-affirming “procedures and treatments … when performed on children, can legally constitute child abuse” under Texas Family Code. A few days after that, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott directed the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to investigate families who seek out gender-affirming care for their children.


BACKGROUND: Abbott says parents, doctors should face ‘abuse’ investigations for transgender health care

A Travis County district judge did issue a temporary injunction preventing the state from enforcing Abbott’s directive earlier this month, but Paxton has asked the state Supreme Court to intervene to allow child abuse investigations into parents of trans children.


MORE: AG Paxton asks Texas Supreme Court to let investigations into transgender families continue

Organizations Trans Resistance of Texas (TRoT) and TEAR IT UP said these actions from Abbott and Paxton “will further marginalize and traumatize trans kids that are already in the foster care system.”

The groups gathered at noon for a “die in” — which they explained is a form of protest that brings attention to legislation that causes undue harm to certain populations. To show this, protesters laid down in a line near the capitol building steps.

Organizations Trans Resistance of Texas (TRoT) and TEAR IT UP gathered on March 31, or Transgender Day of Visibility, to host a “die in” protest at the Texas State Capitol. (KXAN Photo/Frank Martinez)Organizations Trans Resistance of Texas (TRoT) and TEAR IT UP gathered on March 31, or Transgender Day of Visibility, to host a “die in” protest at the Texas State Capitol. (KXAN Photo/Frank Martinez)Organizations Trans Resistance of Texas (TRoT) and TEAR IT UP gathered on March 31, or Transgender Day of Visibility, to host a “die in” protest at the Texas State Capitol. (KXAN Photo/Frank Martinez)

“What we were trying to draw attention to here is the very real harm that will be caused to trans youth and honestly trans adults if this pattern of legislation continues,” said Juniper Porter, with TRoT and TEAR IT UP.

Earlier this month, families warned DFPS about Abbott’s directive to launch investigations into families who seek gender-affirming care for their children, saying not affirming kids’ identities could impact their mental health.

The Trevor Project also shared within the last year, it had more than 14,500 crisis contacts with young Texans who asked to connect with a counselor through a call, chat or text message.


RELATED: Group had almost 15K crisis contacts with LGBTQ+ Texans

Abbott’s directive isn’t the only action the governor and lawmakers have taken in regard to transgender youth. In January, a law requiring Texas public school athletes to play sports based on their biological sex at birth took effect. At the time, Texas was the 10th state to pass this type of legislation.

“Trans people have always been here, and … we’re not going anywhere. And this law would only harm more children,” Porter said.

Not only have these types of policies been implemented at the state level, Texas school districts are also taking action. Earlier this month, NBC News reported the superintendent of Granbury Independent School District in north Texas told librarians to pull books about sexuality and transgender people from campus shelves. About 130 titles were reviewed, and a volunteer review committee voted to permanently ban three of the books.

On Tuesday, 15 Texas lawmakers wrote a letter to the superintendent, Jeremy Glenn, commending his “courageous leadership,” and saying they hope other districts follow Granbury ISD’s example.

Source Here: kxan.com

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