Ohio Republicans Postpone Bill Prohibiting Cross-Sex Hormones for Minors

Ohio legislation that would ban providing minors puberty-blocking drugs and cross-sex hormones for “gender transitioning” is being postponed until next year, according to the bill’s Republican sponsors.

House Bill (HB) 454, known as the Save Adolescents from Experimentation (SAFE) Act, introduced by State Representatives Gary Click (R-Vickery) and Diane Grendell (R-Chesterland) aims to prohibit certain procedures from altering a minor child’s sex.

With only a few weeks left of lame duck, the Republican sponsors say they decided to postpone the legislation rather than to quickly rush it through the current legislative session.

“Rep. Click has made the decision to hold off on HB 454. He felt that it would be too much of a rush to get the bill through during lame duck and still get it right,” Click’s office said in a statement to The Ohio Star.

The SAFE Act has gathered support from approximately two dozen state lawmakers and various outside organizations.

“The unmitigated greed of the healthcare industry has led to countless children being mutilated and sterilized for life. Sadly, hospitals, schools, and even Planned Parenthood facilities across the state are pressuring families to put children on experimental and dangerous procedures. The Ohio General Assembly needs to take action before more children are permanently harmed,” policy director of the Center for Christian Virtue (CCV) David Mahan said.

Alliance Defending Freedom said in testimony for the bill that there is no scientific proof that these drugs and procedures are safe for minors.

“No studies have shown that these drugs and procedures are safe for children. But the permanent harm they can do is undeniable. The use of puberty blockers, hormone replacement, and radical, irreversible surgery is a dangerous, poorly understood experimental procedure. It pushes vulnerable children down a one-way street that leads to permanent sterility and a lifetime of medical intervention,” Senior Counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom Matt Sharp said.

According to an article by the Mayo Clinic, describing the conditions and treatments of gender dysphoria, certain puberty-blocking drugs can have long-term effects on growth spurts, bone growth and density, and future fertility.

The legislation has also had a lot of opposition, with dozens of LGBTQ activists and Democrats testifying in opposition to the bill.

“HB 454 denies children the right to life-saving healthcare. Blocking access to gender-affirming healthcare will only have a negative impact. People say they’re protecting children by not letting them be forced to be something they’re not. But, with bills like this, you are forcing those very children to be something they’re not, denying their true identities,” Mallory Golski with Kaleidoscope Youth Center said.

Democratic Minority House Leader Allison Russo (D-Columbus) says that the decision to suspend further movement this session on HB 454 ” is a momentous victory for transgender children and their families.”

According to Click’s office, the legislation will come up in the next session.

“The bill will be back next [general assembly] because it is essential to protect our children from permanent medical risks,” Click’s office said in a statement to The Star.

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Hannah Poling is a lead reporter at The Ohio Star and The Star News Network. Follow Hannah on Twitter @HannahPoling1. Email tips to [email protected]
Background Photo “Ohio House of Representatives Chamber” by Antony-22. CC BY-SA 4.0.


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