From left: Rep. Bruce Skaug, sponsor of the Idaho bill, and Rep. Wes Allen, the sponsor in AlabamaIdaho and Alabama are both advancing bills that would make it a felony to provide gender-confirmation procedures to minors, with Idaho’s carrying a sentence of up to life in prison.The Idaho House State Affairs Committee Friday approved House Bill 675, which would add these procedures to existing state law banning female genital mutilation.
It would make it a felony to prescribe hormones or puberty blockers to a young person, or to perform gender-affirmation surgery; the latter is not generally performed on minors anyway.
The full House is expected to consider the bill soon.Its sponsor, Republican Rep. Bruce Skaug, contends such treatment causes medical problems and that young people aren’t mature enough to make decisions about gender confirmation. “If we do not allow minors to get a tattoo, drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, sign a legal contract, why would we allow them to go through these physical mutilations because of their feelings at the time,” he said, according to Boise State Public Radio.Trans youth and their allies have pointed out that these procedures are lifesaving. “By voting yes on House Bill 675, you are voting to kill me and other kids just like me,” Eve Devitt, a 16-year-old trans girl who had suicidal thoughts before beginning treatment, testified during debate on the bill.Trans man Calvin Udall, who began his medical transition at age 15 and is now a college student, made similar comments. “The years before I was given access to gender-affirming health care were the worst years of my life,” he told legislators, as the public radio service reports.Rep.