Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued the following statement reminding the City of Austin of the obligations Texas municipalities have to follow all state laws relating to prohibited treatments for children. 

“On May 2, 2024, the Austin City Council passed a resolution that purportedly directs the City Manager and city employees not to comply with Texas’s prohibition of puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and invasive surgeries for children who believe their gender is different than their biological sex. Riddled with problems, the resolution starts with the falsehood that such prohibited treatments have ‘proven to be evidence based, medically necessary, and lifesaving.’ In addition to a growing body of medical research rejecting such claims, Texas concluded that the proposed treatments for minors are dangerous, and banned the practices by passing SB 14. 

Further, the resolution is no more than an empty political statement. Each clause directing the City Manager to defy SB 14 is prefaced with the nonsensical qualification, ‘except to the extent required by law.’ In other words, the Austin City Council would order the City Manager and city employees to follow the law while pretending to say the exact opposite. 

If the City of Austin refuses to follow the law and protect children, my office will consider every possible response to ensure compliance. Texas municipalities do not have the authority to pick and choose which state laws they will or will not abide by. The people of Texas have spoken, and Austin City Council must listen.”

The Attorney General will enforce the laws of Texas against any physician or health care provider who violates Texas Health and Safety Code § 161.702. Additionally, the Attorney General stands ready to act against any locality that adopts an ordinance or implements a policy or practice that provides, aids, or assists individuals or entities providing puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, or surgeries to children diagnosed with gender dysphoria or otherwise seeking to medically change their biological sex.