Transgender health care for Ohio minors banned; no boys on girls sports teams

(The Center Square) – The Republican-dominated Ohio Senate followed the House’s lead Wednesday and easily voted to override Republican Gov. Mike DeWine’s veto of a bill that would ban transgender health care for minors and create single-sex sports teams.

The Senate, briefly interrupted by protesters, needed only 20 votes to override both vetoes, stopping DeWine with a 23-9 vote on a bill that blocks transgender health care. House Bill 68 will become law in 90 days.

“The people of Ohio and the people across this nation understand some basic truths,” said Sen. Kristina Roegner, R-Hudson, said. “There are men and there are women. There are boys and there are girls, and they are different. Gender is not fluid. There is no such thing as a gender spectrum. Gender is not assigned at birth, but rather at the moment of conception you are either male or female.”

Roegner also said teenagers and children are not capable of making life-altering decisions.

Sen. Paula Hicks-Hudson, D-Toledo, said people should be able to make their own choices.

“What we are doing today is creating major harm to a small segment of our population,” Hicks-Hudson said. “It does not show that Jesus does love all of us.”

The House, also dominated by Republicans, voted 65-28 to override the veto Jan. 10.

HB68 blocks gender affirming care for minors, including surgeries, puberty blockers and hormone therapy. It also bans males from participating on female sports teams.

DeWine issued the veto in late December and a week later issued an executive order that banned transgender surgeries on minors and developed transgender health care rules for children and adults.

The rules include protections for adults and children receiving transgender care in the state hospitals that would stop what DeWine called “fly-by-night” providers or clinics giving out medications without quality care.

They would also require multi-disciplinary teams at hospitals to provide support care, including psychiatrists and a comprehensive plan of the risks associated with the treatment and required mental health counseling.

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