(LifeSiteNews) — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem on Monday signed a bill that bans “gender transition” drugs and surgeries for minors.
“South Dakota’s kids are our future,” Noem said in a statement. “I am signing HB 1080 to protect our kids from harmful, permanent medical procedures.”
HB 1080, nicknamed the “Help Not Harm” bill, bars health care professionals from prescribing puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones to minors and performing “any sterilizing surgery … to alter the appearance of, or to validate a minor’s perception of, the minor’s sex, if that appearance or perception is inconsistent with the minor’s sex.”
The new law also prohibits any surgery that “artificially constructs tissue having the appearance of genitalia differing from the minor’s sex” as well as other procedures to “remove any healthy or non-diseased body part or tissue.”
Medical professionals found to have violated the law must have their licenses revoked and can face civil action from individuals mutilated by “gender transitions” as children.
HB 1080 passed the South Dakota Senate last week in an overwhelming 30-4 vote after passing the House by a similar margin in January.
It takes effect on July 1 and requires doctors to wean minors off hormone drugs by no later than Dec. 31.
Terry Schilling, the president of American Principles Project, praised South Dakota leaders “for acting to protect children in their state from this medical malpractice” in a statement on Monday.
“The transgender industry’s assault on vulnerable children is appalling,” he wrote, noting a recent whistleblower report that exposed extreme, irreversible damage done to children at a gender clinic in Missouri. “It is truly a horror show.”
“The momentum for this movement fighting the transgender industry continues to grow, and we’re just getting started,” Schilling concluded.
The passage of HB 1080 came despite the objections of Sanford Health, a health care system based in Sioux Falls and the state’s largest employer, which provides so-called “gender-affirming care,” including puberty blockers. In 2020, Sanford Health successfully lobbied against similar legislation that Noem also reportedly opposed behind the scenes.
Puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones are linked to serious and life-threatening side effects, including cardiovascular diseases, stroke, cancer, and fertility problems. Neither type of drug has been approved by the FDA for gender dysphoria or studied in randomized controlled trials or longitudinal studies with gender-confused minors.
“Gender-affirming” surgeries result in permanent mutilation and sterilization, and research shows that people who undergo them have exponentially higher rates of suicide.
With the enactment of HB 1080, South Dakota joins several other Republican-led states that have cracked down on chemical and surgical mutilation of minors in recent years.
Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas have passed laws or taken executive action to restrict the experimental practices.
Utah last month became the first state to protect children from “gender transitions” in 2023 with a law that bans sterilizing surgeries and places a moratorium on hormone drugs.
Similar bills have already passed at one state legislative chamber this year in Mississippi, Montana, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Wyoming.