Protect Our Kids from Child Abuse: New Hawley Bill Holds Youth Trans Clinics Accountable

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Today U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) introduced the Protecting Our Kids from Child Abuse Act, new legislation that would allow those who were harmed by gender-transition procedures as minors to bring lawsuits against the participating individuals and entities.

“What the American people are seeing take place at pediatric gender clinics in St. Louis and across the nation is appalling,” said Senator Hawley. “Children who are harmed by these dangerous procedures, which are often irreversible and sterilizing, will now be able to fight back against those who perpetrated their abuse. And federal taxpayers will no longer be forced to foot the bill for abusive treatment.”

Last week, Senator Hawley announced an investigation into whistleblower allegations of child abuse and potential malpractice at The Washington University Transgender Center at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. He also wrote to the university’s chancellor, hospital president, and the center’s co-directors requesting information and answers regarding gender-related treatments performed on minors since the opening of the Center.

The Protecting Our Kids from Child Abuse Act would:

  • Create a private right of action for individuals who were harmed by a gender-transition procedure performed on them when they were minors.

    • The following individuals and entities would be liable for damages: a pediatric gender clinic where the procedure was performed; a medical practitioner who performed the procedure or was employed by the clinic; and a university or hospital that is affiliated with the clinic.
  • Prohibit federal funding to any pediatric gender clinic, to any university or hospital that is affiliated with a pediatric gender clinic, and for any gender-transition procedure performed on minors.

View the full bill text here.