After a transgender lawmaker’s censure, Montana prohibits gender-affirming care for minors.

On Friday, Montana became the latest state to prohibit gender-affirming care for minors, following controversy that led to the state House censuring one of the state’s first openly transgender lawmakers. Governor Greg Gianforte (R) signed the bill into law after it comfortably passed the state House and Senate earlier this month, making Montana one of 17 states that have enacted legislation barring transgender youth from accessing at least some form of gender-affirming care.

According to the Movement Advancement Project, which tracks state legislation on LGBTQ issues, the law states that minors may not be provided with gender-affirming medical treatments, including surgical procedures, doses of testosterone or estrogen, or puberty blockers. Exceptions are made for minors with a medically verifiable disorder of sex development. Medical providers who violate the law could face disciplinary action and suspension from practicing medicine for at least a year.

The parents or guardians involved in the minor receiving care could also be subject to civil action. Despite lobbying from his son, who identifies as gay and nonbinary, and uses “he” and “they” pronouns, Governor Gianforte signed the bill. The bill’s signing came after the Montana House voted to censure state Rep. Zooey Zephyr (D), for a comment she made against the gender-affirming care ban. Zephyr condemned the bill’s signing as being “cruel as it is unconstitutional.” She predicted that it would be struck down in the court system. The bill is set to take effect on October 1st.

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