Judge considers block on Indiana transgender care law

Indiana is due to enact a law prohibiting parents from seeking gender-affirming care for their transgender children July 1. In the meantime, a federal judge is considering a temporary ban on the law taking effect, according to a June 14 Indiana Capital Chronicle report.

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signed the bill into law April 5. It prohibits physicians from knowingly providing gender-affirming care to minors younger than 18, or from aiding or abetting another provider in doing so.

The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Indiana filed a lawsuit the same day on behalf of four transgender youths and their families. The children will lose access to the care they are already receiving within six months of July 1 if the law takes effect.

"Every other case has looked at a statute similar to this and in other states [the court] has entered a preliminary injunction," Kenneth Falk, legal director of the ACLU of Indiana, said following a June 14 court hearing. "I'm hoping that's what happened, but we'll have to see what the judge's decision is."

Judge James Patrick Hanlon will make a ruling "as soon as possible," according to the report. Thomas Fisher, solicitor general with the Indiana attorney general's office, said the judge was "fair minded" and took all arguments made seriously.

More than 900 children in Indiana have sought care at Riley Children's Hospital in Indianapolis for gender dysphoria between 2018 and 2022, the report said.

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