Texas has "initiated investigations" into the families of trans children, according to a lawsuit

The governor asked "licensed professionals" as well as the "general public", to report parents of minors receiving gender-affirming care.

Texas has "initiated investigations" into the families of trans children, according to a lawsuit

According to a lawsuit filed Tuesday, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services opened an investigation into a Texas Department of Family and Protective Services employee who had a transgender teenage daughter. She was accused of child abuse.

This suit comes on the heels of a not binding legal opinion last week by Texas AttorneyGeneral Ken Paxton. It stated that providing gender-affirming care, including hormone therapy and puberty blockers, to anyone under 18 years old is child abuse. The Governor. Greg Abbott issued a directive directing "licensed professionals" as well as "members of general public" to report parents of transgender minors, if they are receiving gender-affirming care.

The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services began investigating families with transgender children shortly after Paxton's decision and Abbott's directive. Tuesday's complaint alleges that this was done within a short time. Patrick Crimmins (director of communications) said that the department has received three reports, but could not confirm whether all three are being investigated.

One family is being investigated by the American Civil Liberties Union and Lambda Legal. They were referred to as the Doe Family, which included Jane Doe, the Department of Family and Protect Services employee; John Doe her husband; and Mary Doe their transgender daughter of 16 years.

According to the complaint, Abbott's directive had "wreaked havoc upon the Doe family."

Jane Doe questioned her supervisor at the department on Wednesday about the impact of Abbott's letter. Jane Doe was "placed on leave from her job because she had a transgender child with a medical need to treat gender dysphoria," according to the lawsuit.

Jane Doe received word the next day that her family would undergo an investigation in accordance to Abbott's letter. This would determine if her and her husband had committed any abuse.

Friday saw an investigator from the department's child protection services division visit the Doe household, interview them, and request access to Mary Doe’s medical records. The Doe family declined.

The CPS investigator stated that Jane Doe and John Doe were only accused of having a transgender child. He also suggested that Jane Doe may have provided their daughter with gender-affirming medical care.

Megan Mooney is listed on the complaint as an extra plaintiff. She is a licensed psychologist and is considered a mandatory reporter under Texas law. The lawsuit stated that Megan Mooney would violate her professional standards and inflict severe harm and trauma to her clients if she reports parents of trans minors who receive gender-affirming care if she follows the governor’s directive.

Plaintiffs were named as Abbott, Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, and Jaime Masters, the commissioner of the department. They argued that they violated the Texas Administrative Procedure Act by attempting to circumvent the legislative process. It also claimed that defendants had violated equal rights and due process protections as guaranteed by the Texas Constitution.

Crimmins, spokesperson for the department, stated that the agency was aware of the lawsuit, but declined further comment. The governor's office did not respond to a request for comment.

Paxton and Abbott published their letters one week before the Republican primary election in Texas. This led advocates to claim that they were politically motivated due to Paxton's close race with other challengers. In addition to being indicted on securities fraud charges, he is currently under FBI investigation for allegations of corruption and abuse of office. His office has not responded to a request for comment. He has previously denied wrongdoing in statements to media outlets and said that the accusations were politically motivated.

Adri Perez, policy and advocacy strategy for LGBTQ equality at ACLU of Texas, said last week to NBC News that "no Texas court or country has ever found that gender affirming care can be considered child abuse."

Five of the largest counties in the state said on Thursday that their district attorneys would not follow Abbott’s directive. They wrote in a joint statement that "will enforce and will not unjustifiably interfere" with medical decisions between parents, children and doctors.

Even though the directive might not be upheld by courts, advocacy groups claim they have received an inundation of messages from parents of trans children who are concerned about being reported as child abusers.

Equality Texas spokesperson said that the group had received concerns from "hundreds of family members" and Emmett Schelling (executive director of Transgender Education Network of Texas) said that the directive has caused "chaos."

He said, "We have a crisis in the ground because parents fear for their safety," "We are talking about family separation by the state government."

He stated that both parents and doctors are providing medical guidance to their families. Additionally, doctors are receiving it from accredited medical organizations that support gender affirming care for minors, such as the American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Psychological Association.

Karen Krajcer, a parent who lives in Austin said that while they are afraid, they are also exhausted by the "incessant attacks on the transgender community."

Krajcer began going to Texas Capitol last year, when more than 50 antitrans bills were being considered by the Legislature -- to advocate for her trans 10-year-old girl.

She stated that she is frustrated by people who dismiss Paxton's opinion or Abbott's letter, saying they are "political stunts." However, her family is still feeling the impact.

After spending days compiling letters and photos to show that she was a good mother, last week she sat down at the kitchen table and wept with her husband.

Krajcer stated, "We thought our children couldn't hear us. My daughter came in and brought this card she made." On the front, it said "Mom! We love you so much." This can be fought together.

She said, "It's one those things where it's like 'Oh! That's so sweet.' But my child is thanking you for standing up to her, and for letting her be her." That's my job. This just shows how scared she must feel.

Krajcer stated that her daughter doesn't receive gender-affirming medical treatment. She feels she must stay in Texas to fight for trans children who are getting it, but whose families cannot move to another state.

She said, "I feel like I have to stay here and fight. But I don't want my children to live in a world where their parents are grateful to them for doing what doctors tell them to do."

Asaf Orr is a senior staff attorney at National Center for Lesbian Rights, and the director of Transgender Youth Project. He said that the center has information on several families in Texas who are under investigation due to the governor's directive. He expects that this number will continue to grow. He said that even if nothing is found, the families will still experience trauma and anxiety.

He stated, "The truth is that the harm is done simply because you open the investigation." "Until this policy is permanently stopped, it will continue having significant effects on trans families raising kids."

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