A duo of discrimination has dominated the Iowa legislature this year. Between the two of them, Representatives Sandy Salmon and Jeff Shipley are responsible for ten of the thirteen discriminatory anti-LGBTQ bills tracked by One Iowa Action. And they are listed as sponsors for all but three of the bills.
All thirteen of the newly proposed bills concern a person’s gender identity, including whether they can use a particular bathroom, whether they can access health care or play sports and whether parents should be notified or provide consent for education or health care purposes.
Trans youth are targets of eleven of the bills.
Ten of these bills are in the House of Representatives and Reps. Sandy Salmon or Jeff Shipley have their names on five each.
None have been assigned to a committee or subcommittee.
“Iowa legislators should stop focusing on demonizing a vulnerable group of kids and instead get back to the work Iowans want them to do. Our schools need funding. Our economy needs serious attention. We need to get people vaccinated and back to work. Let’s focus on legislation that makes us all better as a community rather than measures targeted at discriminating against children.” -Courtney Reyes, Executive Director, One Iowa
“An extreme wing of the Iowa Republican caucus continues to release bill after bill targeting LGBTQ Iowans and in particular our transgender children. This is inappropriate. Children cannot vote, cannot participate in political processes which take place while they are in school, and generally cannot fight back,” Courtney Reyes, the executive director of One Iowa, said in a statement.
“Iowa legislators should stop focusing on demonizing a vulnerable group of kids and instead get back to the work Iowans want them to do,” Reyes added. “Our schools need funding. Our economy needs serious attention. We need to get people vaccinated and back to work. Let’s focus on legislation that makes us all better as a community rather than measures targeted at discriminating against children.”
“It’s incredibly disturbing to see the Iowa Legislature continue to target the safety and inclusion of LGBTQ students in our schools,” said Becky Ritland, Interim Executive Director of Iowa Safe Schools said in a statement. “Even introducing these types of hateful bills causes considerable harm to LGBTQ youth. No child should feel that being safe and affirmed in their community is a subject of debate.”
Discriminatory legislation proposed by Rep. Sandy Salmon
HF 170: Would prevent the state from penalizing people if they do anything in line with their “sincerely held religious beliefs” including denying LGBTQ Iowans employment, marriage and adoption.
The bill also specifies that someone acting on their religious beliefs wouldn’t be penalized for having “sex-specific standards and polices” for dress code, grooming and access to bathrooms.
HF 184: Would limit transgender students from participating in sports by requiring school-sponsored teams to be explicitly labeled by the biological sex of the participating students. Girls who are biologically male automatically aren’t allowed to participate in girls’ sports.
If a student’s gender is “challenged,” the student must show a signed statement from a licensed physician that indicates the child’s internal and external reproductive organs, their natural testosterone levels and an analysis of their genetic makeup.
HF 187: Amends the Iowa civil rights Act by allowing any educational institution to deny access to bathrooms based on biological sex. So trans women can’t use the women’s room and trans men can’t use the men’s room.
HF 193: States that gender dysphoria is usually temporary, especially in children, so it would remove gender affirming health care for children. It also falsely states that cosmetic surgery is a regular part of this health care for children and that puberty blockers inflict long-term damage.
The bill also overlooks the requirements people have to meet to qualify for both kinds of care, mainly long-term counseling and consultation with doctors.
The bill would make it illegal for medical professionals to administer puberty blockers to minors or perform gender affirming surgery, despite the fact that minors rarely get surgery and never without extensive counseling and parental consent.
HF 272: Would remove gender identity as a protected class under the Iowa civil rights Act. Co-sponsors include Reps. Dean Fisher, Skyler Wheeler and Mark Cisneros.
Discriminatory legislation proposed by Rep. Jeff Shipley
HF 326: Requires a school to provide information about “transition regret” and detransition as well as the potential “harm and adverse outcomes” of any kind of transition if a school teaches about gender identity at all.
HF 327: Forbids physicians from treating children who have gender dysphoria unless the physician receives consent from all parents and legal guardians and describes the procedure, especially the potential long-term effects.
Physicians must also give children a list of alternative treatment and they’re required to detail all potential consequences to the child, though research shows most consequences aren’t severe and are carefully monitored throughout treatment.
HF 334: Another version of HF 184 with unclear differences.
HF 340: Would alter the Iowa civil rights Act to specify that one person’s rights based on their gender identity come in second to someone’s rights based on their sex, especially if the person complaining on the basis of sex is a woman.
In short, “if in conflict, rights provided on the basis of sex under the Iowa civil rights Act of 1965 have priority over the rights afforded…based on the person’s gender identity.”
HF 341: Extends the statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims if those claims relate to treatment for gender dysphoria.