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Local students start fund to help trans kids receive gender affirming treatment out-of-state

A full trans flag, with creases in it. The trans flag consists of five horizontal stripes from top to bottom: baby blue, baby pink, white, baby pink and baby blue.
Alexander Grey

Local students are raising money to help trans minors receive gender affirming care out of state.

Boise School board member and activist Shiva Rajbhandari is forming the Eve Devitt fund to pay for travel, lodging, and other expenses that trans and non-binary minors and their families may need while seeking care out of state.

Earlier this year, the Idaho legislature banned puberty blockers, hormone therapy and gender affirming surgery for Idahoans under 18. HB 71 was signed into law by Governor Brad Little in April and will go into effect in January 2024. The law makes it a felony for doctors to provide gender affirming care for trans minors who experience gender dysphoria.

Seventeen-year-old Boise High student Eve Devitt is co-founder and board president of the fund.

“In a place like Idaho, a large part of the trans experience, for better or for worse, is like this deep loneliness and this feeling like nobody understands or nobody cares enough to to try to do something,” she said.

The mutual aid fund is named after Devitt, who is trans and active in the fight against anti-trans laws. She said the goal of the fund is to very publicly show trans and non-binary minors that people are actively fighting for their rights.

“Basically what we're trying to do is work around this legislation to try to show to trans kids that people do care,” she said.

All major US medical associations support gender affirming care for trans people, including minors. Gender reassignment surgeries, while often cited by lawmakers supporting the ban, aren’t performed on minors in Idaho.

The Eve Devitt Fund will also give out scholarships to high school students fighting for human rights in Idaho to help them pursue higher education.

As the Canyon County reporter, I cover the Latina/o/x communities and agricultural hub of the Treasure Valley. I’m super invested in local journalism and social equity, and very grateful to be working in Idaho.

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