by Charlotte Hazard
North Dakota GOP Gov. Doug Burgum has signed a bill outlawing gender-affirming care for minors, making it a felony for doctors to perform sex-change surgeries on children.
House Bill 1254 was signed by the governor Wednesday.
Burgan says the bill was drafted, passed and signed into law with the purpose of “protecting children from the life-altering ramifications of gender reassignment surgeries.”
Health care providers who perform transgender surgery on a minor could face up to 10 years in prison and $20,000 in fines under this new law. It gives a smaller penalty of up to 360 days in prison and $3,000 in fines for administering sex change medications to children.
North Dakota joins 13 other states including Alabama, Oklahoma and Utah in banning gender-affirming care for children.
The American Civil Liberties Union of North Dakota referred to the new law as “a vast government overreach that undermines the fundamental rights of parents.”
“By signing this bill into law, Gov. Burgum (pictured above) has put the government in charge of making vital decisions traditionally reserved for parents in North Dakota,” Cody Schuler, the group’s advocacy manager, told NBC News. “This ban won’t stop North Dakotans from being trans, but it will deny them critical support that helps struggling transgender youth grow up to become thriving transgender adults.”
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