Federal Court Halts Anti-Transgender Healthcare Ban, Protects Children's Rights

Federal Court Halts Anti-Transgender Healthcare Ban, Protects Children's Rights

TALLAHASSEE, FL -- This morning, US District Judge Robert Hinkle granted a preliminary injunction against Florida’s Boards of Medicine and Osteopathy’s rules banning gender-affirming care for transgender youth, as well as components of SB 254, the Criminalizing Gender Affirming Care law, that Governor DeSantis signed last month. The court’s order allows those challenging the ban to access care while the legal battle continues and affirms, in numerous passages, the humanity of transgender people and the importance of gender-affirming care. 

The case is being brought by families of transgender youth represented by Southern Legal Counsel, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and the Human Rights Campaign. Their full release and the preliminary injunction language can be found here.

“This ruling is an important win for those challenging the dangerous ban on gender-affirming care and an unwavering endorsement of the right of transgender people to be treated with dignity and respect,” said Jon Harris Maurer, Equality Florida Public Policy Director.  “Judge Hinkle was unequivocal: Transgender people are real and deserving of lifesaving healthcare. We are incredibly grateful for the courageous families who stepped forward to challenge these dangerous policies, the legal organizations leading the way, and for the clear-eyed ruling in favor of decency and medical freedom. The Governor’s pursuit of unconstitutional laws and personal vendettas comes at the direct expense of taxpayers. Instead of investing in initiatives that promote the welfare of the community, these actions drain valuable resources and undermine the potential for progress.” 

The court's ruling indicates a strong likelihood of success for the plaintiff parents' claims that SB 254 and the Boards of Medicine and Osteopathy rules unconstitutionally infringe upon their rights to make informed decisions about their children's medical treatment. Moreover, the court recognizes that these bans violate the equal protection rights of transgender youth by denying them medically necessary, doctor-recommended healthcare. In the ruling, Judge Hinkle affirmed the transgender community, asserting that “gender identity is real,” and praised the value of best practice, medically-necessary care that is supported by all major medical organizations in the country.

Governor DeSantis is facing a growing number of legal challenges that go beyond the issue of transgender healthcare, including laws that infringe on the public’s right to free speech and protest, target drag shows where minors are present, prohibit Chinese citizens from owning property in Florida, suppress the rights of young, Black, and brown voters, and even threaten to upend the custody agreements of parents of transgender youth. The financial impact is substantial. According to the Miami Herald, the legal costs have already exceeded a staggering amount of $16.7 million. Additionally, in the legal battle against Disney, Governor DeSantis and his handpicked board are facing significant legal fees of nearly $1,300 per hour, as reported by Insider. These mounting expenses place an additional burden on taxpayers, diverting funds that could be better utilized for the advancement of society.

Jane Doe, one of the parents challenging the healthcare ban, stated, "Today my entire family is breathing a huge sigh of relief knowing we can now access the treatment that we know will keep Susan healthy and allow her to continue being the happy, confident child she has been." The challenge to the healthcare bans imposed by the Boards of Medicine and Osteopathy and SB 254 is expected to swiftly proceed to trial, underscoring the urgency in protecting the rights and well-being of transgender individuals and their families.


Equality Florida is the largest civil rights organization dedicated to securing full equality for Florida’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community. Through education, grassroots organizing, coalition building, and lobbying, we are changing Florida so that no one suffers harassment or discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity.


October 2010

May 2010

October 2009

July 2009

June 2009

May 2009

April 2009