In the final moments of this year’s legislative session, HB11 was passed. This anti-transgender, discriminatory bill effectively bans transgender athletes from middle and high school sports. Gov. Spencer Cox has already promised to veto this bill, and for that the Utah Stonewall Democrats thank him.

However, this never should have happened. Bills that single out our transgender youth as a threat to the safety of cis-gendered students should not be heard by our Legislature, much less passed into law. HB11, through changes made in committee by the Senate and approved at the late hour by the House, retained language that violates the letter and spirit of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution, which provides for equal protection for all citizens. We urge state legislators to reconsider future iterations of this — or any — law such that teenage transgender students are not unfairly targeted.

We stand with all trans students and their families as the hurt that this will cause, even temporarily, is real. Please remember that you are loved and valued by many.

Jen Schwartz

West Jordan