With “bathroom bills” being considered in a number of states, the American Medical Association is now weighing in.
The AMA has taken an official stance on transgender bathrooms, saying policies that bar people from using facilities that correspond with their professed gender identity can have grave health consequences.
The AMA, the largest association of doctors and medical students in the U.S., passed the resolution earlier this week at its annual meeting in Chicago. “Laws and policies that restrict the use of public facilities based on biological gender can have immediate and lingering physical consequences, as well as severe mental health repercussions,” said Jesse M. Ehrenfeld, an AMA trustee.
Ehrenfeld added that the AMA had passed the resolution “to protect public health and to promote social equality and safe access to public facilities and services.”
Furthermore, the AMA delegates said that when planning future meetings, the association should boycott cities, counties and states that prohibit transgender people from using the bathrooms of their choice.
The association also approved two other resolutions on transgender issues. One measure asserted that gender identity is “incompletely understood as a binary selection.” The association vowed to work harder to educate the medical community on “the medical spectrum of gender identity.”
Another resolution called on the AMA to lobby the Food and Drug Administration to look at reproductive health as a gender-neutral issue. “The idea is to take the focus away from gender identity and place it on reproductive potential,” an AMA Wire summary of the measures said. “That is because there are patients who identify as male who may be taking medication that puts them at risk for damage to their biologically female reproductive systems.”
— Jillian Kay Melchior writes for Heat Street and is a fellow for the Steamboat Institute and the Independent Women’s Forum.