This article was published on January 4th, 2023
Anti-trans legislation continues to rise at alarming rates as queer advocates attempt to counteract the current laws targeted at transgender people.
2022 Represented an Uptick in Anti-LGBTQ+ Legislation
Despite valiant efforts throughout the country, more states have managed to advance the bills targeting transgender people that have limited local protections and have given religious groups more leverage to discriminate. Anti-trans bills have become a battle cry for members of the GOP to appeal to their constituents and rail against the current Biden administration.
There have been measures meant to bar and/or criminalize healthcare for trans youth, the use of public restrooms, participate in academics and sports programs, or get identification documents displaying their name and gender. The startling statistics indicate that all but three states weighed in on transgender rights since President Biden entered the White House.
Conservatives that support these initiatives stress the laws are about protecting the rights of children, parent’s rights, and religious freedom. On the other side, however, supporters of trans rights content these acts are discriminatory and do not support the wishes of all constituents.
Healthcare Restrictions for Transgender Youth
Study after study has shown the discrimination and systemic hurdles continue to prevent young trans adults from receiving the care they need. In the last two years alone in the United States, 25 bills have been introduced to restrict access to gender-affirming medical care for minors. In 27 states, there are currently no laws on the books providing LGBTQ+ inclusive insurance protections, an alarming statistic that supporters are working diligently to overturn in the new year.
Single-Sex Facility Restrictions
Still considered a hot button issue for the right, trans people still face many hurdles across many states when it comes to single-sex facility restrictions. Transgender people still face the issue of being confronted about which gender’s restroom they should use.
Excluding Transgender Youth from Athletics
Anti-LGBTQ+ opponents have introduced laws to ban transgender youth from participating in school sports, primarily in kindergarten to 12th grade. In 2022, the number of states that banned transgender athletes from school sports and/or competition more than doubled, and in 2023, trans advocates have made the decision to attack this issue at the local and grass roots levels as more states attempt to pass legislation.identification
Restrictions On Accessing Accurate ID
Trans people need updated, consistent identification cards to open bank accounts, start new jobs, enroll in school, and travel domestically and internationally. Being unable to access certain public spaces and access resources can have far-reaching implications and many states continue to deny trans people basic rights that every individual should have. In 2023, the ACLU is working even harder to remove the restrictions transgender people face in securing identity documents.
Religious Exemption Bills
Religious exemption bills have been a constant thorn in the side of the LGBTQ+ community as they have traditionally denied access in several areas, including health care, adoption, and foster care. Religious Freedom Restoration Acts (RFRAs) will continue to be an issue for the foreseeable future, which means that LGBTQ+ advocates are responding with strategies that include raising awareness in specific areas (primarily the deep South and Midwest), and long-term strategies that directly address religion and faith.
Bills Pre-Empting Local Protections
There are a plethora of bills that have been implemented or are under consideration to prevent cities and other local government entities from passing non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people. LGBTQ+ equality bills are meant to protect trans people with proper healthcare rights, provide updated gender markers on ID cards, and decriminalize sex work.
In 2023, Democrats will run even more forcefully on pro-trans platforms, with the promise and intent to protect the rights of transgender individuals if elected. As the laws and mandates continue to change, HomoCulture will be on the front lines with updated reports affecting the lives of those living within the LGBTQ+ community.