By Corinne Murdock |
Arizona State University (ASU) began paying for children’s gender transitions at the start of the year, as part of a health care plan similar to one provided by at least one other state university.
ASU offers up to $10,000 in tax-free reimbursements for these treatments, which it dubbed “gender-affirming” medical care. Both employees and their dependents are eligible for the reimbursements.
ASU isn’t the only university to offer this benefit. The University of Arizona (UArizona) is also paying up to $10,000 for gender reassignment surgeries for employees and their dependents.
Employees or their dependents are eligible for these reimbursements if the gender transition services aren’t covered by the Arizona Department of Administration’s health care plan.
Reimbursement is available for gender-affirming medical care services not currently covered by the Arizona Department of Administration health care plan.
Minors may not receive gender transition surgery in the state, according to a bill codified in April of last year, SB1138. The legislation nearly died in the Senate Health & Human Services Committee. Former State Sen. Tyler Pace initially refused to support the bill. Pace changed his mind after reviewing the standards of care issued by the World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH) at the time.
Last September, WPATH modified their standards of care to declare that minors are capable of giving informed consent through a legal guardian.
Federal policy doesn’t address gender transition procedures as part of Medicaid coverage. In 2021 the Biden administration began enforcing a rule modifying the Affordable Care Act (ACA) non-discrimination provisions to include sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes.
In November, a federal court rejected the Biden administration’s attempted expansion of sex-based discrimination to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
ASU’s Educational Outreach and Student Services provides a “trans-specific” resource page, which includes an 11-page guide informing faculty on proper transgender student inclusion in the classroom. Their advice included using pronouns in email signatures, attend training workshops to receive an “ally” placard and image to include in their communications, vocalize their pronouns on the first day of class, using gender-neutral terms on class documents, requesting pronouns from students prior to class, and establishing anti-bullying policies.
The guide characterized bullying as any negative commentary and the intentional use of incorrect pronouns.
“Blatant misgendering and transphobic comments create an unsafe and hostile learning environment for all students,” read the guide.
ASU also offers a $79, four-hour course for K-12 teachers to address the “social, emotional, and educational needs” of transgender students. Behind the course is the program manager for the Transgender Education Program (TEP), Cammy Bellis, who’s work at ASU over the past decade concerned establishing safe and affirming K-12 environments for LGBTQ+ students. TEP has existed for nearly seven years. Bellis was formerly an education training coordinator and board member for the Gay, Lesbian, & Straight Education Network (GLSEN) chapter in Phoenix.
GLSEN is a national organization pushing LGBTQ+ ideologies onto minors.
ASU disclosed that their surveys revealed an increase in transgender or LGBTQ+ students over the years, with an estimate that there would be one or more transgender or LGBTQ+ student in every classroom.