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Arizona Governor Signs Two Anti-Trans Bills Into Law, the Day Before Transgender Day of Visibility

BY: Trevor News
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A majority of adults say that transgender minors should have access to gender-affirming medical care if it’s recommended by their doctor and supported by their parents.

85% of transgender and nonbinary youth also say that recent debates around anti-trans bills have negatively impacted their mental health.

March 30, 2022 — The Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention and mental health organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people, condemned the signing of two anti-trans bills into law by the governor of Arizona. These bills, SB 1138 and SB 1165, aim to criminalize best-practice, gender-affirming medical care and restrict participation in school sports for transgender and nonbinary young people, respectively. Arizona is believed to be the 14th state to enact an anti-trans sports ban, following Oklahoma, whose governor signed similar legislation into law earlier today. This also comes the day before Transgender Day of Visibility, an annual day meant to celebrate the transgender community.

A new poll released by The Trevor Project today found that a majority of adults agree transgender minors should have access to gender-affirming hormone therapy (55%) and puberty blockers (52%) if it’s recommended by their doctor and supported by their parents.

“While the problems transgender and nonbinary youth cause communities are hypothetical, the harms these laws will cause them are very real. We’re talking about a group of marginalized young people who have consistently been found to be at greater risk for bullying, depression, and attempting suicide — and 85% say recent debates around anti-trans laws have even further negatively impacted their mental health,” said Sam Ames (they/them pronouns), Director of Advocacy & Government Affairs. “Today alone, on the eve of Transgender Day of Visibility, three anti-trans bills were signed into law across the country. This onslaught is not an accident; it is overwhelming by design and in direct response to progress in the fight for trans rights. But the Trevor Project will continue supporting our young people while we continue the fight against these policies. We are here for you, and we are not going anywhere.”

A recent poll by The Trevor Project found that 85% of transgender and nonbinary youth say recent debates about state laws restricting the rights of transgender people have negatively impacted their mental health. 

  • When asked about new policies that would ban transgender girls from playing on girls’ sports teams and transgender boys from playing on boys’ sports teams, 74% of transgender and nonbinary youth said it made them feel angry, 57% felt sad, 43% felt stressed, and nearly 1 in 3 felt scared.
  • When asked about proposed legislation that would ban doctors from prescribing gender-affirming medical care like puberty blockers or hormone therapy, 73% of transgender and nonbinary youth said it made them feel angry, 57% felt sad, 47% felt stressed, 40% felt scared, and more than 1 in 3 felt hopeless, helpless, and/or nervous.

The Trevor Project’s 2021 National Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health found that more than half (52%) of transgender and nonbinary youth seriously considered suicide in the past year, and 1 in 5 attempted suicide. However, research has also consistently found that gender-affirming medical care, such as safe and reversible puberty blockers, can work to improve mental health outcomes and reduce risk for suicide. 

A 2021 peer-reviewed study by The Trevor Project, published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, found that gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT) is significantly related to lower rates of depression, suicidal thoughts, and suicide attempts among transgender and nonbinary youth. Specifically for young people under age 18, receiving GAHT was associated with nearly 40% lower odds of recent depression and of a past-year suicide attempt. 

Research also shows that transgender and nonbinary youth who have access to gender-affirming spaces report lower rates of attempting suicide. A 2021 peer-reviewed study by The Trevor Project’s researchers, published in Transgender Health, also found that transgender and nonbinary youth who reported gender identity acceptance from adults and peers had significantly lower odds of attempting suicide in the past year.

If you or someone you know needs help or support, The Trevor Project’s trained crisis counselors are available 24/7 at 1-866-488-7386, via chat at TheTrevorProject.org/Get-Help, or by texting START to 678678. 

About The Trevor Project

The Trevor Project is the world’s largest suicide prevention and mental health organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people. The Trevor Project offers a suite of 24/7 crisis intervention and suicide prevention programs, including TrevorLifeline, TrevorText, and TrevorChat as well as the world’s largest safe space social networking site for LGBTQ youth, TrevorSpace. Trevor also operates an education program with resources for youth-serving adults and organizations, an advocacy department fighting for pro-LGBTQ legislation and against anti-LGBTQ rhetoric/policy positions, and a research team to discover the most effective means to help young LGBTQ people in crisis and end suicide.

MEDIA CONTACT:

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