The Texas Supreme Court today (Friday, May 13) issued a ruling lifting an injunction keeping the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services from launching child abuse investigations into Texas families who give their transgender children access to gender-affirming treatment and the healthcare professionals who provide that care. But the court left in place an injunction halting such an investigation into the family that filed suit against DFPS and Gov. Greg Abbott after they became the target of such an investigation.
While that seems like a mixed bag result, advocates of trans people and their families were quick to point out that court noted that DFPS is not bound by Abbott’s directive ordering such investigations nor the nonbinding opinion from Attorney General Ken Paxton on which Abbott’s directive was based. They also pointed out that the plaintiffs in Doe v. Abbott can continue with their suit,
For the non-lawyers among us — and that is a lot of us — all that legalese can get confusing fast. So attorney Kerri Bertrand, with O’Neil Wysocki Family Law’s LGBTQ Family Law Section, took a moment to explain it for the rest of us. Bertand also pointed out Justice Debra Lehrmann’s concurring opinion, which includes a footnote declaring, “In my view, a parent’s reliance on a professional medical doctor for medically accepted treatment simply would not amount to child abuse.”
— Tammye Nash