Minnesota moves to strengthen status as ‘trans refuge state’

By STEVE KARNOWSKI Associated Press
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota is moving to strengthen the state’s protections for children and their families who come for gender-affirming care by making itself a “trans refuge state,” bucking a national backlash against transgender rights.

Democratic Gov. Tim Walz signed an executive order two weeks ago to protect the rights of people from Minnesota and other states to receive gender affirming health care in the state.

A bill that was slated for debate in the House on Thursday night covers much of the same ground, but supporters say a statute would provide stronger, more permanent protections. A similar bill is awaiting further action in the Minnesota Senate after getting a hearing last month.