Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill making California a sanctuary state for child gender surgery.
The bill aims to protect young transgender people and their parents legally in California if they escape conservative states in the US that restrict sex-reassignment surgeries. State Sen. Scott Weiner, who introduced the bill, said on Twitter that the bill seeks to grant asylum to trans minors and their families “if they are criminalized in their own states.”
The law prohibits health care providers from releasing medical information about a child receiving gender reassignment services in response to a criminal or civil action from a state where sex reassignment surgeries are restricted.
“In California we believe in equality and acceptance. “We believe that no one should be prosecuted or persecuted for getting the care they need, including gender-affirming care,” Newsom said in a signed message.
“Parents know what is best for their children and should be able to make decisions without fear of their children’s health. We must take a stand for parental choice,” the governor added.
Meanwhile, conservative groups have accused the bill of undermining parents’ rights to protect their children from harmful medical procedures.
Jonathan Keller, president of the California Family Council, said the bill is the biggest threat to parental rights in recent years.
“If Governor Newsom signs this measure, California should be prepared to face legal action. Attorneys general in other states will not sit idly by as California steals children from parents who don’t want these trans treatments, he said.
Earlier this year, California declared itself an abortion sanctuary state and the governor signed abortion bills designed to strengthen abortion protections in the state.