The Wisconsin State Legislature has launched an attack on your body with a series of bills aiming to facilitate discrimination based on gender identity. These bills disallow participation in sports for people identifying as transgender in both K-12 and higher education, and close the door for transgender people to access mental health services without discrimination. Read how these bills propagate hate and further isolate the transgender community below.  

2021 SENATE BILL 31 & 2021 ASSEMBLY BILL 14

This bill allows marriage and family therapists, professional counselors, and social workers to discriminate based on gender, gender identity, or ethnicity by denying service. It also allows these practitioners to employ and promote interventions with the sole purpose of changing a person's sexual orientation or gender identity, including attempting to change behavior, self-expression and sexual or romantic attractions toward individuals of the same gender.
On top of that, it allows these practitioners to engage in sexual contact, sexual conduct, or any other behavior that could be construed as seductive, romantic, harassing, or exploitative, with a former client, regardless of the amount of time that has passed since the termination of professional services. That means that in someone’s most dire moment of need, those entrusted with their mental wellbeing could deny them service until they renounce their gender identity or sexual orientation and then make sexual advances toward them. 

2021 SENATE BILL 323 & 2021 ASSEMBLY BILL 195

This bill limits the defined “sex” of athletes participating in intercollegiate, intramural, or club sports at University of Wisconsin institutions and technical colleges to the sex determined by a physician at birth and reflected on the birth certificate. Further, the bill also requires prohibiting a male student from participating on an athletic team or in a sport designated for females or women. This ostensibly prohibits all transgender students from participating in collegiate sports even at a club level. 

2021 SENATE BILL 322 & 2021 ASSEMBLY BILL 196

This bill limits the defined “sex” of athletes participating in intercollegiate, intramural, or club sports in all schools public, private and charter, to the sex determined by a physician at birth and reflected on the birth certificate. This will further isolate youth who have transitioned or are transitioning.

These attacks on our fellow Wisconsinites are misguided at best and hateful at worst. After a year and a half of proclaiming that it wasn’t the role of the state to regulate bodies with COVID-19 public health best practice, the Republican legislature has returned to its obsession with regulating other peoples bodies for its own ideological ends. I urge everyone who sees this as the injustice that it is to tell the legislature this is not the Wisconsin we want, and to urge Governor Evers to veto these hateful bills. All are welcome in Madison to not only live, but thrive, and I will work tirelessly to keep that promise. 

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