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Des Moines, IA—Iowa House Republicans approved a measure today that would outlaw gender-affirming health care for Iowa youth, sending it to Gov. Kim Reynolds’ desk for her signature.

The ban, SF 538, prohibits Iowa doctors from prescribing puberty blockers and hormone therapy to transgender youth under 18. Additionally, it prohibits any surgeries on minors intended to affirm a gender that does not match the person’s sex at birth. The House vote comes one day after the Iowa Senate passed its version of the ban.

“With this legislation, Iowa politicians are harming some of the most vulnerable young people in our state,” said Mazie Stilwell, Director of Public Affairs for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Iowa. “Iowa’s youth deserve to make decisions about their own bodies in consultation with their doctors and families—something that is supported by medical associations across the country. We will not stand for these malicious attacks that once again take away Iowans’ say over their bodies and health care. We want all transgender and gender expansive youth in Iowa to know that we see you. You are loved. And you are deserving of respect and autonomy.”

The ban on gender affirming health care is part of a larger assault by politicians on Iowa’s youth. Lawmakers are also pushing through “Don’t Say Gay/Trans” legislation that would prohibit schools from providing instruction related to sexual orientation or gender identity before seventh grade. Additionally, they have introduced a measure that doesn’t allow transgender students in elementary and secondary schools to use bathrooms that align with their gender identity.



Planned Parenthood Advocates of Iowa (PPAI) is an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a mission of fostering and preserving a social and political climate favorable to reproductive health. To meet this mission, PPAI engages in lobbying, issues education, and supporter mobilization.


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