Transgender rights activists push back against Abbott's directive

Transgender rights activists are calling on Governor Greg Abbott to halt his push for investigations into gender-affirming care, and families with transgender children.

"We sit here and tell you that it's happening but I don't think you understand," said Kimberly Shappley. 

Shappley is the mother of a transgender child. She is among many at the capitol calling for swift action to stop Abbott's directive.

"The same people who are pushing for this, push for families to be supported. They talk about family values, what's more of a family value than loving your child unconditionally, fiercely, and passionately," said Emmett Schelling, executive director of the Transgender Education Network of Texas.

Abbott called for the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to investigate families undergoing gender-affirming care, calling it child abuse. But last week a district judge blocked Abbott's directive, at least for now.

"They are targeting innocent happy children in loving homes, and literally sending CPS investigators to their homes," said Rep. Jessica Gonzalez, (D) Dallas.

Daresha Kyi has documented this topic, speaking with mothers of transgender children in Texas. The film is called 'Mama Bears,' and is premiering this week at South by Southwest.

"I was inspired by the women, the journey they took, by the work they are doing. I couldn't think of any better stories to tell, than people who are game changers," said Kyi.

The investigations may be on hold for now, but the activists say there is still much work to do. 

"We are going to do everything in our power to protect our Texas children from government overreach, from our government interfering with children's health care," said Gonzalez.

Texas judge blocks investigations into parents of trans children
Texas Children's Hospital pauses hormone therapy for transgender children
Legal battle continues over whether gender-transitioning care for Texas trans youth is 'child abuse'

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