More legislation targeting transgender Texans is moving at the Capitol this week. Today TFN, Just Texas and the Transgender Education Network of Texas released the following statements.
Austin, TX — As the Texas House Public Education Committee today considers a bill effectively banning transgender students from public school sports, the Transgender Education Network of Texas (TENT), the Texas Freedom Network (TFN) and the faith-organizing movement Just Texas are calling for action to stop the legislative attacks on transgender Texans.
The House Public Education Committee is hearing testimony today on HB 4042, which is the companion to the Senate-passed sports ban bill, SB 29. The House Public Health Committee has also approved HB 1399, which would ban gender-affirming health care for transgender youth. These are just three of the dozens of anti-transgender bills filed this legislative session.
TENT Executive Director Emmett Schelling:
“This session, anti-trans legislators are coming after trans kids, hoping to make it even more difficult for our young people to live happy, healthy lives. These bills are another version of bathroom bills, just the latest packaged ‘emergency’ issue that is really an attack on the transgender community to score cheap political points. We need the support of all Texans to let our elected officials know transphobia is bad for our children and bad for Texas.”
Texas Freedom Network President and Executive Director Val Benavidez:
“It’s appalling that Dan Patrick’s obsession with passing laws to discriminate against transgender people would take even a minute of the House’s time. Texans deserve better than legislative leaders who bully transgender kids to distract from their failures on real challenges our state faces, like addressing the continuing COVID crisis and fixing a fragile power grid that left millions of us freezing in the dark just two months ago. Helping transgender students find their paths in life isn’t a threat to anyone, but failed leadership is a threat to all of us.”
The Rev. Karen Thompson, the senior pastor of upRising church in Austin and a leading voice in Just Texas:
“Whatever our different religious beliefs, people of faith know God loves everyone unconditionally. So it’s heartbreaking to see legislators continue to press for laws that target anyone, especially young people, simply because of who they are. Transgender students already experience stigma, harassment and even violence because of their gender identity. We should love and protect these children of God, not pass laws making their lives even harder.”
TENT is launching two actions on Thursday to oppose HB 4042 and the other more than 30 anti-trans bills filed at the Capitol this session:
- Drive Change: A COVID-conscious caravan demonstration around the Capitol and the Governor’s Mansion in Austin
- Demand Change: A call-a-thon to contact your representatives
The Transgender Education Network of Texas (TENT), the largest statewide, trans led, trans focused organization in Texas committed to policy changes inclusive of trans and gender diverse people in all spaces.
The Texas Freedom Network (tfn.org) is a grassroots organization of religious and community leaders and young Texans building an informed and effective movement for equality and social justice.
Just Texas, a project of TFN, is a movement of clergy and other faith leaders who support social justice, including full equality for LGBTQ people.