Kentucky governor vetoes bill targeting
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[March 25, 2023]
By Andrew Hay
(Reuters) - Kentucky's Democratic governor on Friday vetoed a
Republican bill to ban transgender youths from gender-affirming
healthcare and restrict public toilets they use, bucking a national
Kentucky's Democratic Governor Andy Beshear
looks on after a memorial service for those who died from the
coronavirus disease (COVID-19), held on the Capitol grounds in
Frankfort, Kentucky, U.S., November 14, 2021. REUTERS/Jon Cherry
Governor Andy Beshear, running in November for a second-term in
Republican-leaning Kentucky, said the bill would increase youth
suicides and permit excessive government interference in
personal healthcare decisions.
Supporters of the bill said they were trying to protect children
from undergoing gender-affirming treatments they would regret
later in life.
The Kentucky bill would let teachers refuse to refer to
transgender students by their chosen pronouns, outlaw gender
reassignment surgery for minors, stop use of puberty blockers
and prohibit gender-affirming hospital services.
The bill easily passed Kentucky's Republican-led legislature and
lawmakers may vote next week to override Beshear's veto.
The bill is part of nationwide attacks on the LGBTQ community by
conservative politicians with measures including banning
discussion of gender identity in schools, clamping down on drag
shows and blocking transgender participation in sports.
Over the past week Iowa and Georgia passed bills banning
gender-affirming care for transgender minors and preventing
trans students from using school toilets corresponding with
their gender identities.
In Kentucky, Beshear said in a statement that the bill would
turn teachers into "investigators" prying into students' lives.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky said it would
challenge the legislation in court if it became law.
(Reporting by Andrew Hay in Taos, New Mexico; Editing by Donna
Bryson; Editing by Sandra Maler)
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