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Federal judge temporarily blocks Indiana’s gender-affirming care ban for minors

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (IUSTV News) – A federal judge out of Indianapolis has approved of a partial injunction, temporarily blocking a bill that would ban gender-affirming care for children under the age of eighteen from going into effect.

Senate Bill 480 passed the Indiana legislature earlier this year and was signed into law by Governor Eric Holcomb on April 5. The law was slated to take effect July 1.

The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Indiana filed a lawsuit in federal court on April 5, the same day Governor Holcomb signed the bill. The lawsuit was filed on behalf on four transgender youth, and alleged that the law violated the U.S. Constitution.

U.S. District Court Judge James Patrick Hanlon has been hearing arguments in the case since Wednesday from the ACLU and the Indiana Attorney General’s office.

The partial injunction would halt bans on gender transition surgeries and “speech that would aid or abet gender transition procedures for minors.” Bans on gender-reassignment surgeries, however, are permitted to go into effect. In his opinion, Hanlon said the reason is that such surgeries are not currently provided to Hoosier minors.

“Today’s victory is a testament to the trans youth of Indiana, their families, and their allies, who never gave up the fight to protect access to gender- affirming care and who will continue to defend the right of all trans people to be their authentic selves, free from discrimination.”

– Ken Falk, ACLU of Indiana legal director

Thursday’s ruling is not the end to the legal debate surrounding Senate Bill 480. Judge Hanlon asked for a magistrate judge to enter a case management plan and said a trial date will be set in the future.

To read full copy of the court opinion, click here.