Media Contact

Keisha Williams, [email protected]

June 22, 2023

Raleigh — Yesterday, the North Carolina House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 631, a ban on the use of public health care facilities and state funds for gender-affirming care for minors. Today, the Senate passed HB 574, a ban on trans athletes participating in sports. The bills will return to their original chamber for a concurrence vote. SB 631 and HB 574 are two of 491 anti-LGBTQ bills that have been filed across the country this legislative session, and among four moving at the North Carolina General Assembly this week alone.  

SB 631 passed just one day after a federal district court judge in Arkansas struck down a similar bill as a violation of due process, equal protection, and the First Amendment. After a two week trial, the judge found that, “Rather than protecting children or safeguarding medical ethics, the evidence showed that the prohibited medical care improves the mental health and well-being of patients and that, by prohibiting it, the state undermined the interests it claims to be advancing.” 

The original version of SB 631 that passed the Senate was a ban on trans athletes from participating in sports. Yesterday in the House Health Care Committee, a Committee Substitute was adopted that gutted the bill and amended it to be a ban on gender-affirming care.  

SB 49, a bill that, among other things, restricts discussion of gender identity in schools, and HB 808, a complete ban on gender affirming care for minors, are also advancing through the legislative process this week. 

“All anyone wants for their kids is to see them be supported and thrive,” said ACLU of North Carolina Senior Policy Counsel Liz Barber. “Transgender youth who are affirmed in their gender – be it through health care or through playing on their school sports team – do better in school and feel safer in their communities. Trans youth already face a higher rate of suicide than their cisgender peers. We cannot allow the General Assembly to further limit their bodily autonomy and fundamental freedoms and continue to bully an already vulnerable group.” 

We will continue to advocate for the rights of transgender youth to access the health care, education, and participation in public life they deserve.