Guatemala Congress pushes anti-trans bill

Tue. January 25, 2022 6:11 PM by Gerald Farinas


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Bill 5940 is supported by many U.S.-based Christian organizations involved in missionary work

Members of Congress in Guatemala are advancing a bill that is an affront to transgender rights. Bill 5940 claims to protect the nation's children from "gender identity disorders" by banning material that educates people about transgender identity.

The legislation would also require any media that include transgender topics to be labeled as "not recommended" for persons under the age of 18.

Global advocacy group Human Rights Watch (HRW) is lobbying against the effort.

"Bill 5940 is unscientific and stigmatizes transgender people as a corrupting influence, harmful to children," HRW researcher Cristian Gonzales Cabrera said.

"Lawmakers should aim to promote tolerance, not demean a vulnerable minority, especially given the high levels of anti-trans violence in Guatemala."

The bill claims that transgender identity is a mental disorder, despite the World Health Organization dropping "gender identity disorder" from its International Classification of Diseases.

In the U.S., all major mainstream health and medicine associations had long dropped "gender identity disorder" as a disease.

Bill 5940 is supported by many U.S.-based Christian organizations pursuing missionary work in Guatemala. These include members tied to televangelist Pat Robertson and ministries promoted on major Evangelical cable television networks in America.

Guatemala, which borders Mexico, has a fast-growing Evangelical population that now makes up close to half of church-going people in the country. It has a population of 17 million people.