LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Pediatricians around Arkansas led a rally against House Bill 1570 at the capitol Saturday afternoon.
The bill would prohibit anyone under the age of 18 from getting treatment involving gender reassignment surgery or medication.
It passed this week — and would have to be signed by Governor Hutchinson Monday at the latest.
The Arkansas chapter of the Academy of Pediatrics lead the rally.
They say their hope is to convince Hutchinson to veto the bill — saying it begins a slippery slope of legislating what happens in a pediatric exam room.
“If this bill were to pass, we know that it’s going to raise suicide rates among trans kids — we’ve heard these doctors speak today and say how important gender affirming care is for trans kids,” said Willow Beshears, founder of the Young Trans Women Project.
Supporters of the bill say it does not prevent anyone from getting health care, but merely saves kids from experimenting with hormone therapies that make permanent changes to the body — noting it could cause other health issues later in life.