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MIAMI – Lawmakers in the US state of southern Florida on Thursday approved a proposal to ban doctors and health care workers from providing transition-related health care to transgender minors.

The proposal is a priority for conservative Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is approaching the presidential race, and will become law if he signs it.

The ban, approved by both houses of the Florida legislature, prohibits gender reassignment surgery and the provision of treatments such as puberty blockers and hormone therapy to transgender minors.

These methods are used to combat gender identity disorder. This is a distressing feeling that people whose gender identity differs from their biological sex may feel.

A rising Republican, DeSantis, 44, is pushing a conservative agenda on issues related to education, immigration and abortion rights.

Republicans, who hold a majority in the state legislature, have their full support for him, despite fierce opposition from Democrats who denounced the new law but were unable to stop it.

During a debate in the House, Republican Rep. Ralph Maslo said: We cannot change our gender, according to a statement reported by the Miami Herald.

“And the children targeted by this bill cannot change their gender and must learn that fact,” he added.

The initiative includes exceptions for minors already on puberty blockers or hormone therapy. It also tightens access for adults by banning public funding for such treatments and prohibiting doctors from providing them through telemedicine rather than face-to-face consultations.

Thursday’s vote angered groups such as Equality Florida, which advocates for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community.

“This is an attack on medical freedom and parenting freedom,” John Harris, the group’s public policy director, said in a statement.

“This crusade is about political aspirations, but it has real-world implications for families in Florida.”

Restricting gender-affirming treatment has become a major campaign of US conservatives. Twelve Republican-controlled states have passed laws similar to Florida’s bill in recent months. AFPMore Florida legislature bans treatment of transgender minors

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