ACLU sues Ohio over law banning sex-change surgeries for minors, men in women's sports

Ohio state Capitol building in Columbus, Ohio.
Ohio state Capitol building in Columbus, Ohio. | iStock/pabradyphoto

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) in Ohio is suing the state over its ban on trans procedures for minors and men in women's sports, alleging the law is unconstitutional and harms trans-identifying children.

The ACLU claimed in its lawsuit filed Monday in the Court of Common Pleas for Franklin County that House Bill 68 violates four sections of the Ohio Constitution, including the single-subject rule, the healthcare provision, the equal protection clause, and the due course of law provision, according to a statement on its website.

HB 68 passed on Jan. 24 after Ohio lawmakers overrode Republican Gov. Mike DeWine's veto of the bill, which bans cosmetic sex-change surgeries for minors, the prescription of puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones for minors, and males from participating in girls' high school and college sports.

Get Our Latest News for FREE

Subscribe to get daily/weekly email with the top stories (plus special offers!) from The Christian Post. Be the first to know.

The bill's provisions are slated to go into effect on April 24, unless the ACLU's lawsuit successfully obtains its requested temporary restraining order.

The lawsuit, which was filed on behalf of two families with trans-identifying children, maintains that because it addresses both trans procedures for minors and males in girls' sports, the bill violated Article 2, Section 15 of the Ohio Constitution, which stipulates no law "shall contain more than one subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title."

The suit also claims that "gender dysphoria is a serious medical condition" and that the new law "prohibits the use of well-established treatments for gender dysphoria in transgender adolescents."

"If left untreated, gender dysphoria can result in not just decreased quality of life, but also debilitating anxiety, severe depression, self-harm, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts," says the lawsuit, which also alleges a violation of the Ohio Constitution's Article 1, Section 21, which says "no federal, state, or local law or rule shall prohibit the purchase or sale of health care or health insurance."

The complaint, which presupposes a distinction between biological sex and gender identity while claiming "transgender people have existed throughout history," also alleges the ban on boys competing against girls in high school and college sports is discriminatory.

Freda Levenson, who serves as legal director at the ACLU of Ohio, echoed the suit's claims, saying in a statement that the "ban on gender-affirming care will cause severe harm to transgender youth."

"These personal, private medical decisions should remain between families and doctors; they don’t belong to politicians,” Levenson continued, adding that the law "violates the Ohio Constitution in multiple ways."

"We will fight in court to ensure that trans youth and their parents can access critically important, lifesaving health care without government intrusion," she added.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, who is named in the suit, has said he plans to fight it in court.

"We protect children with various restrictions that do not apply to adults — from signing legal contracts to buying alcohol and tobacco and more," Yost tweeted on Monday. "As I promised during the veto override, my office will defend this constitutional statute."

Ohio is the 23rd state in the U.S. to ban body-disfiguring trans procedures for minors. DeWine vetoed HB 68 in December, saying the legislation would prevent parents from making medical decisions for their trans-identified children.

Jon Brown is a reporter for The Christian Post. Send news tips to

Was this article helpful?

Help keep The Christian Post free for everyone.

By making a recurring donation or a one-time donation of any amount, you're helping to keep CP's articles free and accessible for everyone.

We’re sorry to hear that.

Hope you’ll give us another try and check out some other articles. Return to homepage.

Most Popular

More Articles