Governor’s Decision Looms as Controversial Ohio Bill with Impact on LGBTQ+ Youth Awaits Final Verdict


According to Erica Goldberg, a law professor at the University of Dayton, there are three significant lessons from this bill. However, Goldberg emphasizes that it is crucial to remember that it is not yet legislation.

If the bill is passed, transgender women will be barred from participating in female sports, adolescents will be barred from receiving gender-affirming care even if their parents consent, and mental health services will be restricted.

“Any minor who wants mental health treatment for a gender-related condition needs parental consent as well,” Goldberg added.

The bill has received varied comments, with some claiming it does more harm than good.

“This bill is detrimental to our community,” said Bobbie Arnold, director of transgender advocacy and outreach at PFLAG Dayton. “It will cause a sharp decline in mental health for trans-youth.”

Arnold believes the legislation protects no one and has a direct impact on Ohio’s most vulnerable residents.

“They’re going to live uncomfortably in the body that they’re in,” she said. “Your body is changing in ways that your mind does not fully comprehend.” It’s a dreadful conflict.”

State representatives who support the bill, such as Jena Powell, claim it protects children and female athletes in Ohio.

“It’s not just a question of justice. “It’s also a matter of safety for women,” Powell added. “We are seeing in other states women being harmed by men competing in women-only sports.”

Powell sees the approval of the Ohio Legislature as a victory for the state.

“In Ohio, we want little girls’ to achieve their athletic dreams,” Powell went on to say. “Our request to the Governor is to sign it promptly, to protect women and children in our state.”

However, Goldberg believes that the decision of Governor DeWine can still be appealed.

“If he vetoes the bill, then there is still a chance for the Ohio Legislature to override the veto,” said Goldberg. “I also wouldn’t be surprised if immediately upon it taking effect or being passed, civil rights organizations immediately challenge it.”

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