AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas is appealing a judge’s ruling that bars the state from investigating the parents of a transgender teen about the gender-confirmation care she received.

Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton on Wednesday appealed the temporary order ending the Department of Family and Protective Services’ investigation of the 16-year-old girl’s parents.

The parents continued the investigation and Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s order last week asking authorities to review reports of such treatment as abuse. The lawsuit marked the first report of parents being investigated following Abbott’s directive and an earlier non-binding legal opinion from Paxton calling certain gender confirmation treatments “child abuse.” “.

The appeal adjourns a hearing that District Judge Amy Clark Meachum had scheduled for March 11 on whether to issue a broader temporary order blocking enforcement of Abbott’s directive.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the family by the American Civil Liberties Union and Lambda Legal. The groups also represent a clinical psychologist who said the governor’s directive requires her to choose between reporting clients to the state or losing her license and other penalties.

Chase Strangio, deputy director of trans justice with the ACLU LGBTQ & HIV Project, said officials are “double their cruelty” with the appeal.

“Our clients and now families across the state are being targeted for the first time simply because they continue to provide the same medically necessary care to their children as they have for years,” Strangio said in a statement. .

The governor’s directive and Paxton’s opinion run counter to the nation’s largest medical groups, including the American Medical Association, which have opposed Republican-backed restrictions on transgender people being lodged in nursing homes. state of the country.

President Joe Biden on Wednesday evening condemned Abbott’s directive and announced the steps his administration was taking to protect transgender youth and their families in the state.

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