Statement on Maryland Bills Expanding Abortion Access and Trans Health Care

Advocates for Youth commends Maryland’s legislature and Governor Wes Moore for passing and signing into law bills which protect access to abortion and to gender-affirming care for transgender people.

One of Maryland’s recent bills requires public colleges to consult with students to ensure students have access to medication abortion. Others protect the privacy of reproductive health care records and protect patients and providers from penalties from abortion bans in other states. Gov. Moore declared Maryland a “safe haven” for abortion patients and providers. With anti-abortion extremists committed to ending all access to abortion, these measures are welcome and needed. Maryland also now has the opportunity to follow the leads of California, Massachusetts, and New York and ensure medication abortion is provided by health centers at public colleges.

Maryland also passed the Trans Health Equity Act, which expands the number of procedures relating to gender-affirming care that are covered by the state’s Medicaid program.  Gender-affirming care is a course of treatment that has been endorsed by the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, and proven over decades to be vital to the mental health and wellbeing of transgender people, including youth. It is age-appropriate, life-saving, medically necessary care.  We applaud Maryland’s legislature and governor for these actions and are hopeful the state will go further and join the ranks of states who have pledged to protect transgender providers, patients, and their families from persecution by states with bans on gender affirming care.