Three Texas families with transgender sons under the age of 18 are suing the state, saying they are under investigation for child abuse, specifically for providing gender-affirming care to their children. In the lawsuit, the families go into detail on how the investigations – which they are seeking to halt – have been affecting their personal lives.
Lauren McGaughy, who has been reporting on this story for the Dallas Morning News, said two of the families are going by pseudonyms, and that one family says their son attempted to commit suicide the day that Gov. Greg Abbott directed the Department of Family and Protective Services to investigate transgender children who are accessing gender-affirming care.
“They said after they sought medical and psychiatric treatment for their son, after that suicide attempt, they were reported to [Child Protective Services] by the psychiatric facility that they were actually seeking care from,” McGaughy said. “So, the families go to great lengths to try to express what this has meant for them personally and for their children.”
Last month, the Texas Supreme Court allowed investigations of families with transgender kids to continue but also made it clear that Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton do not have the authority to order DFPS to undertake any investigations, McGaughy said. On Friday afternoon, a district court judge in Travis County blocked the abuse investigations of two families and granted a temporary restraining order against Texas CPS that extends to all members of LGBTQ advocacy group PFLAG.
This week’s lawsuit is the second suit that’s been filed against the state for launching investigations into families with trans kids. An investigation into the family that filed the first suit is on hold while the case is litigated, McGaughy said. Prior to Friday’s restraining order, Child Protective Services had been investigating at least nine families.
“We’ve asked for an update on that number,” McGaughy said. “We know that at least nine probes have been launched, but we have not received an update from CPS since that. So there could be more than nine, but it’s unclear.”