Texas Gov. Abbott: Gender Affirmation Surgeries Considered Child Abuse (Lynda M. Gonzalez-Pool/Getty Images)
By Solange Reyner | Wednesday, 11 August 2021 06:14 PM
Gender affirmation surgeries completed on minors could be considered child abuse under Texas state laws because it may cause a genuine threat of substantial harm from physical injury, Jaime Masters, head of the state Department of Family and Protective Services, told Gov. Greg Abbott Wednesday.
Abbott directed the DFPS to issue a determination on the question.
"Genital mutilation of a child through reassignment surgery is child abuse," Masters' letter to Abbott read. "This surgical procedure physically alters a child’s genitalia for non-medical purposes potentially inflicting irreversible harm to children’s bodies."
Failure to report the abuse is considered a Class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to one year in jail, a fine, or both, Masters said in her letter.
The procedure could be warranted for certain conditions, including for “a child whose body parts have been affected by illness or trauma; who is born with a medically verifiable genetic disorder of sex development, such as the presence of both ovarian and testicular tissue; or who does not have the normal sex chromosome structure for male or female as determined through genetic testing.”
Texas Republican gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines blasted Abbott for waiting so long to seek a determination from DFPS.
“The letter Greg Abbott sent to DFPS today is one that he could have sent six years ago. He didn’t. He also could have tasked the Texas Legislature with passing it. He hasn’t,” Huffines said in a statement. “He also leaves open the ability for abusers to continue chemical castration and brainwashing—something his own political appointees are participating in. He won’t stop them. This isn’t leadership, it’s craven political posturing.
“Greg Abbott must immediately task the Texas Legislature with outlawing not only genital mutilation, but also the brainwashing and chemical castration of Texas children. Texans deserve a governor who will fight against the radical Leftist sickos and end their war on children.”
Arkansas earlier this year became the first state to ban treatments for transgender youth, overriding a veto by Governor Asa Hutchinson and inviting lawsuits from civil rights groups that have vowed to stop it.