Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney has signed an executive order protecting access to gender-affirming health care in Philadelphia.
Major medical associations consider such care necessary and potentially lifesaving. Philadelphia joins a growing list of cities, including Pittsburgh and New York City, that have put in place such protections as GOP-led states across the country have enacted bans or limits on gender-affirming care for transgender individuals.
The order would:
- Prohibit the use of city resources to aid in an investigation that seeks to penalize anyone looking for gender-affirming care in Philadelphia.
- Make medically necessary gender-affirming health care available to those in city custody and jails.
If federal or state sanctions on those health care services are put in place, the order would deprioritize enforcement of any crimes related to providing or receiving gender-affirming health care services to the fullest extent possible.
22 states have imposed bans on gender-affirming care, per data from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. Meanwhile, lawmakers have put forward more than 130 pieces of legislation in state legislatures seeking to ban certain gender-affirming medical care, per data from the ACLU.
"It's incredibly important that the city is taking a stand and making it clear that we're not using taxpayer dollars or city resources to harm transgender people who are just seeking care," Sultan Shakir, president of the Mazzoni Center, tells Axios.
From Axios Philadelphia