A hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, is being threatened by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) with a possible complaint to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights unless it performs transgender surgeries.
The warning comes as Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare paused the surgery planned for 19-year-old Chris Evans, whom the ACLU claims is suffering from gender dysphoria.
“In recent weeks, some care providers voiced questions about patients receiving gender affirming procedures at a facility affiliated with our health system,” said Rachel Powers, a spokeswoman for the hospital. “This resulted in a temporary pause to review current practices.”
The ACLU claims that this pause could be a violation of federal law.
“Ending medically necessary healthcare for one particular group of people based on sex, whether by formal written policy or simply in practice, is discrimination and violates federal law,” ACLU attorney Lucas Cameron-Vaughn stated. “We will evaluate whether we need to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights once we have a response from the hospital.”
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Transgender procedures have been a focus of Tennessee lawmakers for the upcoming legislative session after Daily Wire host Matt Walsh publicized the fact that certain transgender procedures had been done on minors at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC). After Walsh’s report, Governor Bill Lee (R-TN) called for an investigation of the Pediatric Transgender Clinic at VUMC.
“We should not allow permanent, life-altering decisions that hurt children or policies that suppress religious liberties, all for the purpose of financial gain,” Lee’s office said. “We have to protect Tennessee children, and this warrants a thorough investigation.”
At the time, Walsh appeared on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson to discuss the revelations.
“We know for a fact, this is an absolute fact, that Vanderbilt, they perform double mastectomies on minor girls, on children; they chemically castrate children, and they give them irreversible hormone drugs that change their bodies permanently. They’re doing all of that to kids,” he said.
.@MattWalshBlog on Tucker after exposing Vanderbilt's abuse of children: "They perform double mastectomies on minor girls. They chemically castrate children. That's happening all across the country in every single state." pic.twitter.com/WV9RgTzcjR
— American Firebrand (@AmFirebrand) September 22, 2022
In November, Tennessee Majority Leaders William Lamberth and Jack Johnson, both Republicans, introduced the Protecting Children from Gender Mutilation Act, which would effectively bar doctors from prescribing puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and performing gender-related surgeries on minors for the purpose of medical transition.
“This bill is about protecting children,” said Johnson. “Under no circumstances should minors be allowed to undergo irreversible elective procedures to mutilate body parts and intentionally harm their reproductive systems. This practice comes with lifelong health complications that children are not capable of understanding.”