AUSTIN, Texas — Texas House Republicans are holding a hearing Wednesday on their bill aiming to ban Texas trans kids from playing sports on teams that match their gender identity — marking the fourth time kids have faced this attack from their legislature this year, amid a host of other attacks on trans kids’ health and safety. In response, a broad coalition is rallying and testifying at the Capitol today to protect Texas kids and protest these attacks, and Texas Democrats continue to stand with these advocates every step of the way.
Not one child benefits from Texas Republicans’ cruel H.B. 25. This bill will cut kids off from the myriad social and health benefits of team sports, and subject kids to invasive privacy violations. When Republicans first introduced the bill during this year’s regular legislative session, parents, kids, trans advocates, mental health experts, and educators repeatedly gave powerful testimony on the harm this bill would do. Republicans’ continued revival of the bill is yet another reminder that Abbott’s GOP is hellbent on advancing an extremist agenda and catering to rightwing primary voters — even at the expense of kids’ health and safety.
Infuriatingly, H.B. 25 is already taking its toll. Advocates are sounding the alarm about skyrocketing rates of mental health crises among trans kids in Texas, driven by relentless attacks from the legislators who are supposed to serve Texas families. The Trevor Project, an LGBTQ+ hotline, recently reported that calls from Texas youth are up 150 percent compared to 2020.
Texas Democratic Party Co-Executive Director Jamarr Brown issued the following statement:
“Right now, Texas Republicans are reviving their anti-Texan, anti-child bill for the fourth time this year — attempting to ban trans kids from playing sports on teams that match their gender identity. H.B. 25 is cruel, dangerous, and already harming kids across our state. Unfortunately, this is not the only attack our kids have faced this year at the hands of Abbott’s GOP. Whether it’s allowing COVID-19 to ravage our schools or clearing the path for more gun violence with reckless new permitless carry legislation, Greg Abbott and Texas Republicans have consistently put their extreme rightwing agenda above the health and safety of Texas kids.
“If Greg Abbott actually cared about Texans, he would be working every day to keep us safe from COVID-19, protect our schools from gun violence, and fix the grid so we can keep the lights on. Instead, Abbott is twisting the knife and exacerbating those problems. Our state deserves leaders who put people first, and that’s not Abbott. That’s why Texas Democrats are fighting every day to defeat Abbott in November 2022. This is about keeping kids safe.”