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25 October

Administration’s Transgender Proposal Not Based on Medical Science

Category: Advocacy, Gender Health, Public Affairs

Legacy Community Health, the largest community health center in Texas, today opposed the Trump Administration’s effort to re-write the way transgender Americans are treated under civil rights law.  The Administration is looking into making the legal definition of sex as a “biological, immutable condition,” thereby cutting transgender people out of civil rights protections.

“Stigma and discrimination seem to be driving the proposal, not the widely accepted scientific and medical knowledge of the definition of sex,” said Legacy’s Dr. Jennifer Feldmann. “Someone’s sex doesn’t always correlate with his or her chromosomes. That’s just a medical fact of life. We’ve talked a lot about the extremely high suicide rate among transgender youth. The new proposal coming out of Washington will likely make this public health crisis worse.” 

More than 40% of transgender Americans try to kill themselves at some point in their lives, compared with almost five percent of the general public, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and the Williams Institute.

Feldmann sees transgender patients who drive from as far as El Paso and Brownsville to receive care at Legacy’s Montrose clinic in Houston. She sees primarily transgender youth, who are up to eight times as likely to have depression as all other youth and are at a much higher risk for attempting suicide.