Rabbinical Assembly Rejects Texas Governor’s Assault on Transgender Children and Families

In response to Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s directive to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to treat gender-affirming medical care as "child abuse," the Rabbinical Assembly (RA) issued the following statement:

We are outraged by Governor Abbott’s flagrant attempt to punish the parents of LGBTQ+ children seeking gender-affirming medical procedures in Texas. This attempt to criminalize life-saving medical care for transgender youth, enabled by the erroneous conclusion of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton that procedures for minors constitute child abuse, will cause long-term damage to individuals and to families and will only intensify attacks against the LGBTQ+ community across the country. We further condemn the immoral imposition of reporting requirements on licensed medical professionals who have contact with trans youth, which amounts to a form of unprecedented medical surveillance for minors and demonstrates a gross abuse of power.

As the international association of Conservative and Masorti rabbis, we affirm the right of kvod habriyot, human dignity, for all people and are committed to the full welcome, acceptance, and inclusion of all gender identities. We urge Governor Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton to recognize the needs of LGBTQ+ children, their families, and to treat them with the greatest respect.

We expect Texas public health agencies to follow the guidance of the overwhelming majority of medical professionals who support gender-affirming medical procedures and to reject any punitive actions by DFPS against those seeking treatment and their families.