It feels like anti-LGBTQ sentiment has been rising in the U.S. recently, and new data from the Human Rights Campaign backs that up. The analysis focused highly on gender-affirming care restrictions and bans nationwide targeting queer youth and adults alike. Twenty twenty-three saw a massive spike in that kind of legislation, with more than 550 bills introduced in 43 states, and more than 80 signed into law, more than doubling last year which was already the worst on record.
According to the HRC, this legislation has led to nearly 8-in-10 LGBTQ adults reporting feeling less safe, and nearly half report that gender-affirming care bans impact the physical and/or mental health of themselves or their loved ones.
The HRC has even gone as far as to declare a national emergency for LGBTQ people.
“... This survey reveals that the current climate of hostility and fear is only growing worse, and that gender-affirming care bans are taking a detrimental toll on the physical and mental health of LGBTQ+ Americans,” said Kelley Robinson, President of the Human Rights Campaign. “Extremist, anti-LGBTQ+ politicians and their allies are waging a dangerous and cruel misinformation campaign that seeks to stigmatize not only gender-affirming care but transgender and non-binary people as well.”
Back in Florida, one of the most restrictive states in the U.S. for gender-affirming care, the survey found that trans and non-binary people across the state are worrying about their wellbeing. Over 93% reported that gender-affirming care bans make them feel less safe as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, and many of them are already planning to move out of the state as a result.
“The results of this survey make clear that we Floridians will be repairing that damage of anti-LGBTQ laws passed in this state for years to come,” said Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida. “Conferences are canceling, talent is fleeing and the best and brightest are abandoning our universities, while LGBTQ+ people are feeling more unsafe than ever before. These attacks have to stop.”
Currently, there are 21 states across the U.S. that have enacted laws banning gender-affirming care. Most of those bans are primarily focused on minors, but some states, like Florida, have begun encroaching on adult gender-affirming care.
Read the full report here.