Texas appeals court reinstates injunction blocking investigations into parents of transgender kids

Texas appeals court reinstates injunction blocking investigations into parents of transgender kids

Isabel Webb Carey
Isabel Webb Carey
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March 22, 2022

A Texas appeals court reinstated the injunction blocking child abuse investigations into the families of transgender children who receive gender-affirming care on Monday evening.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas and Lambda Legal had filed a lawsuit on behalf of a transgender teen’s parents who were being investigated for possible child abuse by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. 

Earlier this month, District Judge Amy Clark Meachum had ruled that a Feb. 22 directive by Gov. Greg Abbott to investigate the parents of transgender children for child abuse was unconstitutional. She said it was an overreach of the governor’s authority, which threatened to violate the separation of powers “by impermissibly encroaching into the legislative domain.” However, the order was temporarily lifted after Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton appealed the ruling, allowing investigations to resume.

On Monday, a Travis County judge reinstated the temporary injunction that blocks the state from child abuse investigations into the families of transgender children. In the decision, the court wrote writing that lawyers challenging Abbott’s order had sufficiently demonstrated that permitting the Department of Family and Protective Services to investigate gender-affirming care as child abuse would result in irreparable harm.

Having reviewed the record, we conclude that reinstating the temporary injunction is necessary to maintain the status quo and preserve the rights of all parties,” the appeals court wrote.

State District Judge Amy Clark Meachum’s ruling once again prevents the Child Protective Services branch under the Texas Department of Family Services from investigating parents who provide gender-affirming medical care to their transgender children. Any investigations will be paused while the case goes to trial.

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Isabel Webb Carey

Isabel Webb Carey

Isabel Webb Carey attends the University of Texas at Austin in the Plan II Honors Program with a certificate in Core Texts and Ideas. Her interests include education, local governance, sustainability, and equity. Isabel enjoys dancing, hiking, and live music. She is also a staff writer for the Texas Orator. Email her at isabelwebbcarey@gmail.com
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