Gov. Hobbs signs 2 executive orders protecting LGBTQ health rights in Arizona
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs signed two executive orders Tuesday that, she says, will protect the health rights of LGBTQ+ Arizonans. The first order mandates that state employee healthcare plans cover gender-affirming surgery. The second order bans state agencies from funding, promoting, or supporting conversion therapy for LGBTQ youth.
Gov. Hobbs says the executive orders will end the unjust practices against the LBGTQ+ community in Arizona.
“Our LGBTQ+ community should never have to face hate and discrimination, and I will do everything in my power to fight for full equality,” said Hobbs, who signed the orders during a press conference held at one-n-ten, a Phoenix-based nonprofit organization that provides a safe space for the LGBTQ youth in Arizona.
The first order lifted the ban on the health insurance offered to Arizona state employees that previously prohibited coverage of gender-affirming healthcare to state employees. The order guarantees employees access to gender-affirming care such as services, supplies, and prescriptions like hormone therapy. It also prohibits state agencies from assisting with other state investigations relating to gender-affirming healthcare.
“Transgender and gender non-conforming state employees are dedicated public servants and deserve equal coverage, just like everyone else,” said Hobbs. “It is unacceptable that they should ever be excluded from receiving medically-necessary care just because of who they are.”
Hobbs said gender-affirming care is lifesaving for many people, whether it’s surgery, mental health services, or prescriptions. “These services allow these individuals to lead healthy lives not only as public servants but as Arizonans, and that is better for all of us,” said Hobbs. The order also establishes Arizona as a safe haven for members of the transgender community and health care providers who offer them the vital services on which they depend.
The second executive order restricts conversion therapy and allows state agencies to implement policies protecting LGBTQ+ minors from its adverse effects.
“The state is leading by example on this issue, and we will continue working until Arizona is a place where every individual can participate equally in our economy and our workforce without fear of discrimination or exclusion,” said Hobbs.
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Arizona said they applauded Gov. Hobbs’ Executive Orders and sent this statement:
The Center for Arizona Policy released this statement on Hobbs’ new executive orders calling it a ‘power grab’:
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