2023 Utah Legislative Session Week 1
By Planned Parenthood Action Council of Utah | Jan. 20, 2023, 11:26 p.m.
Category: Abortion Access
Last week we wrapped up the first week of the 2023 Legislative Session and our team has been working hard to defend access to reproductive abortion access and reproductive health care. There[GU1] has been an overwhelming amount of bills targeting access, health care and our rights in just this last week. We want to break down some of our biggest priority bills so you can stay in the loop.
Be sure you are following all our priority bills on our 2023 bill tracker. We update this daily so you can stay informed during our fast-paced legislative session. To track specific bills even more closely check out our FastDemocracy public bill tracker.
Here's what’s been happening in just the past week:
Our priority bill is HJR2 (Amends Rules of Civil Procedure on Injunctions)
Sponsor: Rep. Brady Brammer
This joint resolution, which revises rules for temporarily blocking the enforcement of a law, passed the House in a 59-13 vote on Monday and is now headed to the Senate. HJR2 would remove the language that supports Planned Parenthood's injunction against Utah's abortion trigger ban. If it passes the Senate, the state could force us back to court to seek new grounds to keep abortion legal and accessible in Utah. In addition, HJR2 would also wreak havoc in Utah's legal system, upsetting multiple current and future cases, and eroding the ability for individuals to challenge government overreach.
For more facts and details about HJR2 check out our public bill tracker under bills we oppose. You can also watch our video all about the resolution here.
Let’s be clear, this resolution is a direct attack on abortion access in Utah and we need our Hive to spread the word.
TAKE ACTION: Text, email, call or DM your Senator and ask them to VOTE NO on HJR 2 – Joint Resolution Amending Rules of Civil Procedure on Injunctions. Find your senator at le.utah.gov.
It’s just the second week of the session there are already three bills directly targeting rights and access in Utah’s transgender community.
- SB 16 - Sex Characteristic Surgical Procedures
Sponsor: Sen. Michael Kennedy
- SB 100 - School District Gender Identity Policies
Sponsor: Sen. Todd Weiler
- SB 93 - Vital Records Modifications
Sponsor: Sen. Daniel McCay
All three bills passed out of the Senate last Friday and will be considered in the House this week. From restricting vital medical care for trans youth (SB 16), to making it harder for Utah kids to be themselves at school (SB 100) and to participate fully in youth sports (SB 93). Utah lawmakers are ignoring medical science, mental health advice, and parental rights in their rush to regulate the bodies and identities of trans people in our state.
We oppose all of these bills and support amendments to reduce their negative impact on Utah’s trans community. Our main focus is SB 16, which prohibits gender-affirming surgeries on minors and creates a moratorium for puberty blockers and hormone therapy for transgender individuals.
To follow these bills and find additional details, be sure to follow along with ACLU Utah’s bill tracker here.
TAKE ACTION: Text, email, call or DM members of the House Health and Human Services Committee and ask them to VOTE NO on SB 16– Sex Characteristic Surgical Procedures. Find committee members here: https://le.utah.gov/committee/committee.jsp?year=2023&com=HSTHHS
Join Equality Utah and ACLU of Utah today, Tuesday January 24th at 12pm at the Utah State Capitol as they gather to send a message to Utah lawmakers that we will not back down and will continue to fight for our transgender youth.
Now for some better news and an update on bills we support:
Sponsor: Rep. Rosemary Lesser
We are proud to support these dual bills that together extend post-partum Medicaid coverage from 60 days to one year and increase the income eligibility to 200% Federal Poverty Level (FPL). Funding requests for these bills received a positive hearing at the Social Services Appropriations committee on Monday morning and we anticipate both bills will be considered by a House committee in the near future.
Thank you for taking action this week and staying engaged in the legislative process! We are already in for a long session, but we know our Hive will be there to defend rights and access for all Utahns.
Be sure to check your email at the end of this week for a recap on week 2!
-The Public Affairs Team