Texas government officials can continue to investigate parents who transition their children to the opposite sex for possible child abuse, the state’s supreme court ruled Friday.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) determined that child sex change surgeries constituted child abuse in August 2021 upon prompting by Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, and the DFPS began investigations of families for potential child abuse over treatments their transgender children were receiving in February. An appeals court had previously blocked these inquiries throughout the state, but the Texas Supreme Court ruled the lower court had “abused its discretion.”
The Friday ruling determined that DFPS investigations against the family and doctor who had brought the suit could not continue and said the investigation could cause “irreparable harm.” The court ruled Abbott and Paxton lacked statutory authority to have ordered these investigations, but that other investigations could proceed.
Texas Attorney General: “There is no doubt” that gender transition of minors is ‘child abuse’ under Texas law.
The Texas Dept. of Family & Protective Services will enforce this ruling and investigate & refer for prosecution any such abuse.https://t.co/hZQguNOiye
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) February 22, 2022
The fight over classifying child sex changes as child abuse has stretched out for months in Texas, where five district attorneys refused to follow Abbott’s executive order to prosecute these crimes in February.
“Subjecting a child to genital mutilation through reassignment surgery creates a ‘genuine threat of substantial harm from physical injury to the child,’” Abbot wrote in August. “This broad definition of ‘abuse’ should cover a surgical procedure that will sterilize the child, such as orchiectomy or hysterectomy, or remove otherwise healthy body parts, such as penectomy or mastectomy.”
Abbott’s office did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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