March 10, 2022

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Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez Joins More than 90 Criminal Justice Leaders to Urge Texas Court to Stop the State From Targeting Transgender Kids and Their Parents

Current and Former Elected Prosecutors, Attorneys General and Law Enforcement Leaders, and Former DOJ Officials and Judges File Amicus Brief Arguing that the Governor’s Anti-Trans Directive Threatens Lives and Undermines Public Safety


Austin, TX – Last night, a bipartisan group of 93 criminal justice leaders from around the nation

– including current and former prosecutors, law enforcement leaders and Attorneys General, and

former Department of Justice officials and judges – filed an amicus brief in the 353rd District

Court of Texas in Jane Doe v. Greg Abbott, supporting efforts to block the State of Texas from

prosecuting and criminalizing parents who seek gender-affirming care for their transgender children.


“This amicus briefing illustrates the power of many voices who speak out against the State of Texas and its Governor Greg Abbott. Blocking parents from seeking gender affirmation for their children is a misuse of authority and something that can not go unnoticed,” said Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez. “There is no place in our country for blatant discrimination against transgender individuals and I am proud to sign and support this briefing to further the fight for underrepresented populations.”


The signatories argue that Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s directive to the Texas Department of

Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to investigate, and potentially prosecute, these parents

for child abuse – and to involve medical professionals, others who care for children, and even

members of the general public in this mandate – will result in grave harm to already vulnerable

young people. As noted in the brief, these divisive and deeply troubling policies erode public

trust in the integrity of the justice system, and thereby inhibit the ability of law enforcement to

keep communities safe.


“Instead of promoting policies that can actually make our communities safer and healthier, some

state leaders in Texas have decided their priority is to attack the trans community and criminalize

life-saving care,” said Miriam Krinsky, Executive Director of Fair and Just Prosecution, the

organizer of the brief, and a former federal prosecutor. “At a time when trust in government is in

dire need of fortifying, this unthinkable action will only serve to deepen biases and divides in our

community, put loving parents and their children at risk and further marginalize an already

vulnerable population. And all of this inevitably will erode faith in the rule of law – an essential

ingredient in maintaining public safety.”


The signatories emphasize in the brief the devastating impact the Governor’s actions will have:

“By singling out families with transgender children for government interference and opening the

door to intrusions into the privacy of deeply personal medical care, while also triggering

potential family separation and even prosecution based on clinically recommended treatment,

Governor Abbott, Commissioner Masters, and the Texas Department of Family and Protective

Services have profoundly threatened both public trust and the well-being of these children and

their loved ones. Mandates and policies such as these create troubling and destructive barriers

between members of vulnerable communities and law enforcement and will only increase the

risk of victimization, abuse and violence these individuals face.”


For a full list of amici, click here. The full brief can also be found here

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