Wisconsin Senate poised to give final approval to bill banning gender-affirming surgery

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gender-affirming surgery for minors would be banned in Wisconsin under a Republican-sponsored bill up for final approval in the GOP-controlled Legislature on Tuesday.

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers has vowed to veto the measure. The Assembly passed the bill last week, without any Democratic votes, and the Senate was slated to give it final approval Tuesday, which would then send it to Evers.

Republican lawmakers across the country want to limit the rights of transgender youths, sparking fierce pushback from the transgender community and triggering discrimination lawsuits along the way.

At least 22 states have enacted laws restricting or banning gender-affirming medical care for transgender minors, and most of those states face lawsuits. Gender-affirming surgery for minors is rare, with fewer than 3,700 performed in the U.S. on patients ages 12 to 18 from 2016 through 2019, according to a study published in August.

The Wisconsin bill is one of several in the state targeting transgender people that Evers has vowed to veto. Republicans don’t have enough votes to override the vetoes.

The Wisconsin Assembly last week also passed three bills limiting transgender youth participation on sports teams. The Senate has yet to schedule those for final votes.

Nearly two dozen states have passed legislation limiting athletes to playing on teams that match the gender they were assigned at birth.


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