Georgia legislature passes bill to ban transgender surgeries, cross-sex hormones for minors 

by Jacob Fuller

Vicky Arias, FISM News

Georgia lawmakers on Tuesday passed a bill banning physicians from prescribing cross-sex hormones and performing irreversible transgender surgeries on minors diagnosed with gender dysphoria.

The bill, called SB 140, passed both state chambers and is now headed to Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, a Republican, who is expected to sign it into law.

In a report from Fox 5 Atlanta, State Senator Ben Watson (R-Savannah) asserted that the bill was passed in order to protect minors.

“What we’re doing here is we’re preventing minors under 18 years old from having irreversible changes in their lives,” Watson said.

The bill states that “no large-scale studies have tracked people who received gender-related medical care as children to determine how many remained satisfied with their treatment as they aged and how many eventually regretted transitioning; on the contrary, the [Georgia] General Assembly is aware of statistics showing a rising number of such individuals who, as adults, have regretted undergoing such treatment and the permanent physical harm it caused.”


While the bill bans surgeries and cross-sex hormones, it allows the use of puberty-blocking drugs to continue.

These drugs stop puberty from continuing and have potential long-term side effects, according to St. Louis Children’s Hospital. They include, among others, “less development of genital tissue” and “delayed growth plate closure,” which could affect an individual’s height. Many conservatives are calling for an amendment to the bill that would ban these drugs as well.

The bill’s passage comes as other states, including Tennessee, Mississippi, and Utah have advanced similar legislation.


Laws restricting gender-altering procedures and regimens for minors are due, in part, to studies reflecting the fact that child and adolescent brains are still maturing. In particular, adolescents’ prefrontal cortexes, the decision-making region of their brains, are not fully formed.

Dr. Jay Geidd of the National Institute of Mental Health in Maryland explained the growing adolescent brain in an interview with PBS.

“The frontal lobe is often called the CEO, or the executive of the brain,” Geidd explained. “It’s involved in things like planning and strategizing and organizing, initiating attention and … starting and shifting attention. It’s [the] part of the brain that most separates man from beast, if you will.”

“I think that [in the teen years, this] part of the brain … is not done being built yet,” Geidd continued. “It’s sort of unfair to expect [adolescents] to have adult levels of organizational skills or decision making before their brain is finished being built.”


Cultural attitudes and views on gender dysphoria in children have radically shifted in recent years. A rapidly growing number of children have been referred to clinics for gender change procedures.

In 2022, the Tavistock and Portman Gender Identity Development Service, the only pediatric gender clinic of its kind in England, was told to shut its doors. The National Health Services of England gave the directive after a review of the clinic’s practices showed “health staff felt under pressure to adopt an ‘unquestioning affirmative approach’” to treating gender-questioning youth, according to the BBC.

The Independent reported that “staff, patients, and parents … raised concerns that young people using the service were put on the pathway to transitioning too early and before they had been properly assessed.”

According to the clinic’s website, referrals for minors seeking gender treatment at their clinic rose exponentially in the 10-year period from 2012 to 2022.

In the clinic’s 2011-2012 financial year, it received 210 referrals. That figure jumped sharply over 10 years. By the 2021-2022 financial year, 3,585 referrals were received. According to the Independent report, whistleblowers “alleged children were ‘rushed into taking life-altering puberty blockers without adequate consideration or proper diagnosis.’”