TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — Doctors and parents in Florida who push harmful drugs or surgeries on children may soon find themselves in trouble with the state.
The Republican-led Florida Legislature passed a bill on Thursday that prohibits physicians from administering puberty and hormone disrupting drugs or performing sex reassignment surgeries on anyone under 18 years old. Doctors who violate the law would be subject to a third-degree felony and could face up to five years in prison.
The bill also grants the courts temporary emergency jurisdiction in the event that, “the child has been subjected to or is threatened with being subjected to sex-reassignment prescriptions or procedures” and gives the state authority to take custody of the child under the same circumstances.
Additionally, taxpayer dollars from the state would no longer be allowed to fund sex reassignment surgeries.
The bill defines the term “sex” as: “the classification of a person as either male or female based on the organization of the human body of such person for a specific reproductive role, as indicated by the person’s sex chromosomes, naturally occurring sex hormones, and internal and external genitalia present at birth.”
Governor Ron DeSantis is expected to sign the bill into law.
“This is preventing abuse medically and abuse surgically,” said Rep. Ralph Massullo (R-Marion), a doctor and one of the bill’s co-sponsors. “We don’t have the freedom to harm children.”
Randy Fine (R-Brevard) – who co-sponsored the bill with Massullo – said those people who think they were born in the wrong body are “victims of those who are [evil], who prey on them, and who prey [on] a mental condition to make money.”
“This is not science,” he added. “This is a cult that is focused on the abuse of children.”
Fine also sponsored The Protection of Children Act, which prohibits businesses and local governments from exposing children to “adult live performances” such as drag shows.