The Biden administration, on Monday, filed a petition with the Supreme Court aiming to overturn Tennessee’s ban on gender transition procedures for minors.
This move by the Department of Justice follows earlier lower court decisions that allowed similar bans in Tennessee and two other states to progress earlier in the summer.
DOJ attorneys argued that these bans, including one in Kentucky, violate the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
In their petition, DOJ attorneys highlighted the national importance of determining whether the recent wave of bans on gender-affirming care align with the Equal Protection Clause, stating that it “requires a definitive resolution.”
The DOJ’s filing stressed the potential loss of essential medical care for families in states like Tennessee, where laws such as SB1 have been enacted.
Separately, petitions were submitted advocating for transgender plaintiffs and their families, urging the Supreme Court to consider cases involving similar bans in Kentucky and Tennessee.
However, the DOJ’s filing specifically requests the Supreme Court to address whether the Tennessee ban violates equal protection.
The argument revolves around the law being considered as a sex-based classification, with emphasis on its discriminatory impact on transgender individuals.
Additional private petitions related to the Tennessee and Kentucky bans question whether these laws infringe on the constitutional due process rights of parents to oversee their children’s upbringing.
In March, Governor Bill Lee signed SB1 into law, prohibiting transgender treatment for minors, effective from July. It mandates that children undergoing such treatments before July 1 must cease by March 31, 2024.
In response, groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), filed a lawsuit challenging the law on behalf of families with transgender children.
On Sept. 28, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Tennessee’s ban on transgender treatment for children in a 2–1 ruling, rejecting a petitioner’s challenge.
In July, a panel of judges on the Sixth Circuit Court lifted an order blocking part of the ban, allowing it to take effect.
The DOJ’s filing argues that the Sixth Circuit Court made an error in deeming the Tennessee and Kentucky bans as likely constitutional and insists that these bans should face stricter scrutiny.
The DOJ urged the Supreme Court to consider all three cases together and address the equal protection issue.
They emphasized the potential harmful effects on transgender adolescents nationwide if these bans take effect, including increased distress, anxiety, and suicidal tendencies.
Tennessee’s legislation reflects a broader trend in multiple states taking measures against transgender treatments for minors.
It’s vital to note the serious health risks associated with gender transition procedures, ranging from mental health issues to physical complications and even death.
In May, lawmakers demanded answers after two youths in a transgender hormone study funded by the National Institutes of Health took their lives. Additionally, 11 participants reported having suicidal thoughts.
Share your thoughts by scrolling down to leave a comment.