‘Danger!’ Champion Amy Schneider testifies against Ohio’s ban on transgender grooming

“Danger!” Champion Amy Schneider testified against legislation that would restrict gender-affirming medical care for minors before a committee meeting of the Ohio House of Representatives on Wednesday.

Schneider that first transgender candidate to qualify for the “Danger!” Tournament of Champions and an Ohio native, said she did not attend the meeting to “demonize supporters of this bill or claim they want children harmed.”

“I truly believe that we all have the same goal here: to keep Ohio’s children safe and healthy,” she said.

But, she added, the “Save Adolescents From Experimentation (SAFE) Act‘ – which aims to limit the ability of doctors to offer puberty blockers, hormone replacement therapy and gender-affirming measures an operation on minors – would put some children “in great danger and the danger that not all of them would survive”.

Schneider said she knows that partly from personal experience. She said her life today is “beyond my wildest dreams” after winning and becoming $1 million on “Jeopardy!” the show’s top earner); visited the White House; and married her wife Genevievein May.

“And yet, if all of these things stayed the way they are now and the only thing that would have changed was that I was told I could no longer take hormone therapy, I don’t know that I could go on living ‘ said Schneider said.

She said that for her entire life, before coming out as trans, she felt like “there was this little alarm going off in the back of my head” that said, “Danger, danger.” After receiving gender-affirming care, “for the first time in my life, that alarm went silent, and for the first time I knew peace and quiet.”

Schneider, who was one of more than a dozen people who testified Wednesday, said transgender youth who have access to gender-affirming care will have the opportunity to achieve the same peace.

“So what I’m asking you here today is, please don’t take that away from them,” she said. “Please don’t force her to go back to that constant sense of wrongness and danger. I am not asking anyone here to change their personal views on trans people. I’m not here to scold anyone for pronouns. I am not asking you to do everything except not pass a ban that extends the reach of government, do not restrict the freedom of families, doctors and communities to make their own decisions about what their children need.

Rep. Latyna Humphrey, a Democrat, asked Schneider if she ever regretted receiving gender-affirming care or having suicidal thoughts after her transition.

“I’ve never regretted getting it,” Schneider replied. “It improved my life in ways I didn’t know was going to happen. I’ve learned who I am and I wouldn’t be here today – in fact, if I hadn’t gotten that, I wouldn’t have been successful on ‘Jeopardy!’ I wouldn’t have any of what’s going on for me right now.”

The original draft of the bill, which was amended at Wednesday’s hearing, would have prevented doctors from the provision of puberty blockers, hormone therapies and transition-related surgeries to minors; prohibited the use or distribution of public funds to hospitals or other organizations “that provide sex reassignment procedures to minors”; and Medicaid funding for gender-affirming care of minors prohibited their gender identity to their parents.

According to Schneider and several others, the Committee on Families, Aging and Human Services passed a replacement law that Rep. Gary Click, a Republican and one of the sponsors of the original bill, said it was an attempt to address critics’ concerns.

The replacement law would ban physicians from performing gender-affirming surgery on minors and referring minors to a psychologist “for the diagnosis or treatment of a gender-related disorder” without first disclosing the referral to the minor’s parent or guardian. It would also allow a doctor to prescribe puberty blockers or hormone therapy if a list of conditions are met. Among them, the physician must certify that the minor had previously received routine counseling related to his transition for two years, and that use of the medications did not “induce an increased risk of vaginal atrophy, penile atrophy, testicular atrophy, permanent loss of libido, sterility, endometrial cancer, or polycystic.” ovarian syndrome.”

The replacement also requires that doctors who prescribe puberty blockers and hormone therapies report annual data on those treatments to the Ohio Department of Health, including the number of patients receiving such treatment and their birth-assigned age and sex.

During Wednesday’s hearing, Click said the reporting requirements were an attempt to collect more data about transgender people and their medical treatments in Ohio.

“We’ve made some concessions and that should put us on a middle ground,” Click said of the replacement bill. “Our goal is to ensure safety for those who are transferring and that only people who are ready for the transition are transferring.”

Many of those who testified Wednesday after passage of the replacement law, said the updated proposal introduced by Click would still negatively impact trans youth in the state by creating unnecessary barriers to care. Click did not immediately return a request for additional comments.

Nick Lashutka, president and CEO of the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, said that introducing a two-year waiting period to use drugs “would create an environment where they wouldn’t be used at all.”

He also said that delaying treatment by two years would result in trans youth diagnosed with gender dysphoria experiencing more depression, which would present another hurdle for them to start treatment since the Replacement bill requires that other comorbidities be addressed two years prior to treatment.

Accredited medical organizations – including the American Medical Associationthe American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychological Association — have campaigned for gender-affirming care for minors.

Some Ohio families said the bill would force them to move.

Gary Greenberg, who describes himself as a retired educator, said one of his six grandchildren sees a therapist for gender dysphoria treatment. As a result, his daughter said that if the law became law, she would have to leave the state, and she told Greenberg she would take him with her.

“So we proposed legislation here in Ohio that would result in three generations — three — of an Ohio family fleeing the state, and we’re going to be the lucky ones,” he said, because they have the resources to do so go when many others don’t. t.

Schneider did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment on the amended bill.

Ohio is part of a wave of states that have been considering legislation restricting gender-affirming medical care for minors in the last two years. This year alone more than 160 government bills According to the ACLU, proposals to limit the rights of trans people have been made across the country, and 43 of these target transition-related care for minors. Four States – Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee – passed laws restricting gender-affirming childcare. judge hahave blocked Alabama and Arkansas‘ Actions prior to the entry into force of a pending litigation.

consequences NBC off on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *