New lawsuit filed over Texas trans family investigations

Jun 8, 2022, 3:59 PM | Updated: Jun 9, 2022, 9:38 pm

Three Texas families sued the state Wednesday seeking to halt investigations of them over gender-confirming medical treatments their transgender children received, in a renewed challenge to the state looking into such treatments as child abuse.

The lawsuit also asks a Texas judge to block the state from opening any similar investigations against any Texas members of LGBTQ advocacy group PFLAG Inc.

The lawsuit comes about a month after the Texas Supreme Court allowed the state to investigate parents of transgender youth for child abuse while also ruling in favor of one family that was among the first contacted by child welfare officials following order by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.

The latest challenge, brought by Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union, seeks a new broad order against the investigations. “If it takes a court ruling to ensure that the law protects families who lead with love in support of transgender Texans, so be it.” Brian K. Bond, executive director of PFLAG National, said in a statement.

Spokespeople for Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton did not immediately return messages late Wednesday afternoon.

Texas went farther than any state in February when Abbott issued an order instructing child welfare officials to investigate reports of gender-confirming care for kids as abuse.

A judge in March put that order on hold after a lawsuit brought on behalf of a 16-year-old girl whose family said it was under investigation. The Texas Supreme Court in May ruled that the lower court overstepped its authority by blocking all investigations going forward.

The lawsuit marked the first report of parents being investigated following Abbott’s directive and an earlier nonbinding legal opinion by Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton labeling certain gender-confirming treatments as “child abuse.” The Texas Department of Family and Protective Service has said it opened nine investigations following the directive and opinion.

Abbott’s directive and the attorney general’s opinion go against the nation’s largest medical groups, including the American Medical Association, which have opposed Republican-backed restrictions filed in statehouses nationwide.

Wednesday’s lawsuit in Texas was filed on behalf of families of three boys — two 16-year-olds and a 14-year-old — who have received gender confirming care. The two 16-year-olds in the case have received hormone therapy, according to court filings. The families talked in the filings about the anxiety they’ve faced because of Texas’ investigations.

The mother of one of the teens said her son attempted suicide and was hospitalized the day Abbott issued his directive. The outpatient psychiatric facility where the teen was referred reported the family for child abuse after learning he had been prescribed hormone therapy, she said in a court filing.

“I am offended and hurt that my state government wants to make it unlawful for trans youth like me to be ourselves, and that DFPS, the governor and the attorney general are willing to persecute families like mine simply for loving and supporting their trans children,” another teens said in the court filing.

Arkansas last year became the first state to pass a law prohibiting gender-confirming treatments for minors, and Tennessee approved a similar measure. A judge blocked Arkansas’ law, and the state is appealing.

___

Associated Press writer Acacia Coronado in Austin, Texas contributed to this report

___

This story was first published on June 8, 2022. It was updated on June 9, 2022 to correct that court filings say only two of the three children in the lawsuit have received hormone therapy.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Second fatal shooting this month near George Floyd Square

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — One man died and another was seriously hurt in the second fatal shooting this month near the intersection where George Floyd died in police custody more than two years earlier. Minneapolis Police spokesman Officer Garrett Parten said officers found two wounded men with life-threatening injuries Sunday afternoon near the intersection in south […]
18 hours ago
Associated Press

Police: 2 dead after SUV crashes into N. Carolina restaurant

WILSON, N.C. (AP) — A sport utility vehicle crashed into a North Carolina fast-food restaurant on Sunday, killing two sibling customers, police said. The single-vehicle crash occurred at about 9:45 a.m. at a Hardee’s restaurant in the city of Wilson, around 40 miles (65 kilometers) east of the state capital, Raleigh. The Lincoln Aviator struck […]
18 hours ago
Associated Press

Hit-and-run on Chicago street leaves 3 dead, 1 injured

CHICAGO (AP) — Three people were killed and another injured when they were struck by a car during a hit-and-run on a Chicago street early Sunday, police said. A sedan hit the four males around 5 a.m. on the city’s South Side and then drove away, Chicago police said. No one was in custody, police […]
18 hours ago
Associated Press

Trial begins in shooting death of 7-year-old in Atlanta

ATLANTA (AP) — The trial is underway for a man accused of fatally shooting a 7-year-old girl who was riding in a car with her family after a day of Christmas shopping in Atlanta. Fulton County prosecutor Pat Dutcher said in his opening statement on Friday that Kennedy Maxie was struck by gunfire after the […]
18 hours ago
Navajo Code Talker Thomas Begay talks to people prior to the Arizona State Navajo Code Talkers Day ...
Associated Press

80 years later, Navajo Code Talker marks group’s early days

PHOENIX (AP) — It’s been 80 years since the first Navajo Code Talkers joined the Marines, transmitting messages using a code based on their then-unwritten native language to confound Japanese military cryptologists during World War II — and Thomas H. Begay, one of the last living members of the group, still remembers the struggle. “It […]
18 hours ago
Associated Press

Ex-employee shut down PD website over pay dispute, city says

NEWTON, Mass. (AP) — Officials in a Boston suburb are investigating a former city employee they say shut down the police website during a pay dispute. Newton Mayor Ruthanne Fuller said the former employee, who was the police department information technology director, took down the department website in late June and July. The website instead […]
18 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
...
CANVAS ANNUITY

Best retirement savings rates hit 4.30%

Maximize your retirement savings with guaranteed fixed rates up to 4.30%. Did you know there is a financial product that can give you great interest rates as you build your retirement savings and provide you with a paycheck for life once you retire? It might sound too good to be true but it is not; this product is called an annuity.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Update your child’s vaccines before kindergarten

So, your little one starts kindergarten soon. How exciting! You still have a few months before the school year starts, so now’s the time to make sure students-to-be have the vaccines needed to stay safe as they head into a new chapter of life.
New lawsuit filed over Texas trans family investigations