Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Gender-affirming care ban for transgender youth will not go into effect as planned

A ban on gender-affirming care for transgender youth in Montana will not go into effect on Oct.1 as planned. A district court judge temporarily blocked the new law saying it’s likely unconstitutional.

Three young Montanans who’ve been prescribed gender-affirming treatment, and two health care providers, sued the state last summer. They said the ban violates their rights to privacy, equal protection and the rights of parents under the state’s constitution.

Missoula County Judge Jason Marks ordered the block Wednesday after hearing initial arguments from the plaintiffs and the state’s defense last week. In his ruling, Marks agreed with the argument that a ban would “negatively impact” youth experiencing gender dysphoria.

Akilah Deernose, executive director of the ACLU of Montana, said the ruling allows the plaintiffs to breathe a sigh of relief, but that the fight is far from over.

The Montana Attorney General’s office plans to immediately appeal the block on behalf of the state, arguing the ban is necessary to protect minors from life-altering treatments.

The case is expected to result in a lengthy trial.

Shaylee covers state government and politics for Montana Public Radio. Please share tips, questions and concerns at 406-539-1677 or  
Become a sustaining member for as low as $5/month
Make an annual or one-time donation to support MTPR
Pay an existing pledge or update your payment information