AUSTIN, Texas – Texas House Republicans hold a hearing Wednesday on their bill to ban Texas trans children from playing sports on teams that match their gender identities – the fourth time children have faced this attack on their legislature this year, amid a host of other attacks on the health and safety of trans children. In response, a broad coalition is rallying and testifying on Capitol Hill today to protect the children of Texas and protest these attacks, and Texas Democrats continue to support these advocates every step of the way.
No child benefits from the cruel HB 25 of the Texas Republicans. This bill will deprive children of the myriad of health and social benefits of team sports and subject children to pervasive breaches of privacy. When Republicans first introduced the bill in this year’s regular legislative session, parents, children, trans advocates, mental health experts and educators have repeatedly testified with force on the harm this bill would do. The continued relaunch of the bill by Republicans is another reminder that Abbott’s GOP is determined to push forward an extremist agenda and keep right-wing primary voters happy – even at the expense of children’s health and safety.
Infuriatingly, HB 25 is already wreaking havoc. Advocates are sounding the alarm bells over rising rates of mental health crises among trans children in Texas, driven by relentless attacks by lawmakers supposed to serve Texas families. The Trevor Project, an LGBTQ + hotline, recently reported that calls from Texas youth are up 150% from 2020.
Texas Democratic Party co-executive director Jamarr Brown made the following statement:
“Right now, Texas Republicans are re-launching their anti-Texan, anti-child bill for the fourth time this year – trying to ban trans children from playing sports on teams that match their identities gender. HB 25 is cruel, dangerous and is already harming children in our state. Sadly, this is not the only attack our children have suffered this year at the hands of Abbott’s GOP. Whether it’s allowing COVID-19 to ravage our schools or paving the way for more gun violence with reckless new legislation on unlicensed transportation, Greg Abbott and the Republicans in Texas have always set their agenda far right over the health and safety of Texas children.
“If Greg Abbott really cared about Texans, he would work every day to protect us from COVID-19, protect our schools from gun violence and fix the grid so we can keep the lights on. Instead, Abbott bends the knife and exacerbates these issues. Our state deserves leaders who put people first, and it is not Abbott. That’s why Texas Democrats fight every day to defeat Abbott in November 2022. It’s about protecting children.