SD House State Affairs Committee advances ban on gender reassignment for minors
PIERRE, S.D. — The South Dakota House Affairs Committee has advanced House Bill 1057, also known as the “Vulnerable Child Protection Act” to the House floor in an 8-5 vote Wednesday morning. The bill proposes criminalizing gender reassignment treatment on minors in South Dakota.
While the bill initially would have made it a felony for doctors to perform surgeries or administer hormone therapy to help minors change gender, the committee amended the bill to lower it to a Class 1 misdemeanor and to remove penalties to medical professionals who don’t directly prescribe medications and conduct surgeries from the bill.
According to Rep. Fred Deutsch, the Republican who introduced the bill, treating children with hormones and surgery isn’t health care and is “deeply harmful”.
Libby Skarin, policy director for the ACLU of South Dakota, which opposes the bill, stated that “Medical professionals, not politicians, should decide what medical care is in the best interest of a patient.”
The bill will now go to the full House for consideration.