Skip to main content


DeSantis readies appeal after federal judge strikes down Florida law blocking transgender treatment for children

U.S. District Court Judge Robert Hinkle argued that transgender people have a constitutional right to necessary medical treatment

Juez anula restricciones de Florida en cuanto a la atención medica relacionada con personas transgéneros | Shutterstock

June 12, 2024 4:09pm

Updated: June 14, 2024 11:52am

A federal judge on Tuesday struck down a 2023 Florida law that blocked medical care for transgender children and severely restricted such treatment for adults. The ruling was handed down as part of a 105-page opinion in the case, Doe v. Ladapo.

U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle's decision invalidates much of a law signed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and rules passed by state boards that prohibit children from accessing medical treatment for gender dysphoria, such as puberty blockers and hormones.

Hinkle argued that transgender people have a constitutional right to necessary medical treatment, comparing those who oppose it to those who historically opposed equality for minorities and women.

“Some transgender opponents invoke religion to support their position, just as some once invoked religion to support their racism or misogyny,” Hinkle wrote in his 105-page text.

“Of course, transgender opponents are free to maintain their beliefs. But they are not free to discriminate against transgender people just because they are transgender,” he added.

In his ruling, Hinkle, who was appointed to the judge by former President Bill Clinton, said it was “clear that anti-transgender animus” was what had motivated the bill's sponsors and some lawmakers who passed the law.

Hinkle referred to comments by DeSantis and House representatives about young children being neutered or spayed due to medical treatments for gender dysphoria.

The judge stated that there is no basis for these types of comments and that the record did not show any evidence of Floridian children “castrated or mutilated.” 

“Perhaps all this talk of castration and mutilation is nothing more than political hype,” Hinkle wrote in his decision. “But it casts at least some doubt on the claim that the motivation of these decision-makers was sensible regulation of health care in the best interests of transgender patients rather than outright disapproval of transgender identity.”

The judge not only struck down the ban on medical treatment for transgender children, but also targeted rules requiring transgender adults to receive medical treatment only from doctors, rather than through other types of health care providers.

Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis' office criticized Hinkle's ruling, calling it “flawed” and vowing to appeal in the 11th Circuit.

“The people of Florida acted to protect children in this state, and the court was wrong to override their wishes,” the statement said. “There is no quality evidence to support the chemical and physical mutilation of children. “These procedures cause permanent, life-altering damage to children, and history will remember this trend with horror.”

Fast-File Reporter

Marielbis Rojas

Marielbis Rojas is a Venezuelan journalist and communications professional with a degree in Social Communication from UCAB. She is a news reporter for ADN America.