Red State Announces Controversial Ban

( Alabama’s law banning puberty blockers and surgical mutilation of minors went into effect on Monday, despite pending lawsuits challenging it.

The Vulnerable Child Protection Act was passed back in April and quickly signed into law by Alabama’s Republican Governor Kay Ivey. The law makes it a felony to provide puberty blockers, hormone therapy, or “transition” surgery to anyone under the age of 19. Those violating the law can face up to ten years in prison.

Immediately after Governor Ivey signed it into law, the Justice Department along with such groups as the Southern Poverty Law Center, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Human Rights Campaign filed lawsuits challenging the law.

The groups tried to get a judge to block the law from going into effect while the lawsuits were pending in court. US District Judge Liles Burke considered the motion for a temporary injunction last week but did not make a decision before the law went into effect.

Some medical organizations have spoken out against the Alabama law, including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended that minors should be given access to “gender-affirming” “healthcare.” However, the law’s sponsor, Republican state Senator Shay Shelnutt argued that “gender-affirming healthcare” is “child abuse.”

When signing the bill into law, Governor Ivey argued that children should be protected “from these radical, life-altering drugs and surgeries.”

In March, the Arkansas legislature passed a similar law barring doctors from prescribing drugs to minors. However, Arkansas Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson vetoed it in early April.

In addition to signing the Vulnerable Child Protect Act, Governor Ivey also signed a law similar to Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill. Alabama’s law also bars teachers from giving instruction in gender identity or sexuality to students in grades K-3.