May 26, 2022
The Massachusetts Senate yesterday adopted Amendment 388 which includes protections for providers in Massachusetts who provide essential medical care for transgender youth from out of state.
Amendment 388, introduced by Senator Cindy Friedman, protects doctors, psychologists, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists, and social workers who provide care to youth experiencing gender dysphoria from potential abusive lawsuits originating from other states. The Amendment signals that Massachusetts will not use its resources to facilitate these harmful civil and criminal actions in other states and, instead, that access to gender-affirming care is protected in Massachusetts.
Adoption of the amendment was spurred by attempts in multiple states, including Alabama, Arkansas, and Texas, to ban or restrict access to essential medical care for transgender youth and to criminalize parents and doctors who provide such care.
“The Massachusetts Senate has made a powerful statement that transgender youth are valued and supported in our state, and that access to critical, life-saving healthcare is protected and supported in the Commonwealth,” said Polly Crozier, GLAD Senior Staff Attorney. “While we are seeing some states attempt to ban access to essential, evidence-based care and to strip away parents’ ability to make the best choices for their transgender children’s wellbeing, I’m proud and grateful to see our Massachusetts legislators say loudly and clearly that here in Massachusetts we will always have the backs of transgender young people, their parents, and their healthcare providers.”
All leading medical associations endorse individualized, comprehensive care for the treatment of transgender youth experiencing gender dysphoria as best-practice, life-saving care. Massachusetts is home to some of the leading medical institutions caring for transgender youth including Boston Medical Center, Boston Children’s Hospital, and Fenway.
“We thank Senator Friedman, cosponsors Senators Cyr, Creem, Comerford, Rausch, Feeney, Jehlen, Moran, Cronin, Gobi, Lesser and Moore and Edwards, and Senate President Karen Spilka for their leadership on this important measure,” added Crozier.