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Lawmakers in California have killed a bill that would ban most surgeries on “intersex” infants and young children – those born with ambiguous sex characteristics.
The measure would have prohibited surgeries on children, aged six and under, born with sex characteristics that cannot easily be categorized as “male” or “female,” unless the Medical Board of California determined they were medically necessary.
Majority - State - Lawmakers - Democrats - Republican
A majority of state lawmakers – three Democrats and one Republican on the state Senate Business, Professions and Economic Development Committee, voted to reject the bill, proposed by Democrat State Sen. Scott Wiener, that would have banned most of the intersex procedures, reported the Associated Press (AP).
Wiener claimed the bill addresses a civil rights issue and seeks to “ensure that people who are born intersex are able to make their own choices about their health and their gender identity instead of having other people make those irreversible surgical choices for them.”
AP - Majority - Committee - Members - Measure
However, as AP reported, a majority of committee members considered the measure’s definition of “intersex” to be overly broad.
The committee heard the testimony of Dr. Hillary Copp, a pediatric urologist at the University of California, San Francisco, who said she opposed the bill because it would remove “all flexibility for trained medical professionals and their [sic] loved ones to do what is in the best interest of the patient.”
Sex - Assignment - Surgery - Copp - Fact
“We’re not trying to perform sex assignment surgery,” Copp noted. “In fact, we don’t even assign genders. We talk about the baby. This is such a complex issue. Of course, we want to get it right.”
The committee voted to reject the legislation following a public hearing that featured testimony on both sides of the issue.
Democrat - State - Sen - Jerry - Hill
Democrat State Sen. Jerry Hill expressed concern about limiting intersex surgeries until a child is...
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