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Texas Quietly Removes LGBTQ Suicide Prevention Resources From State Websites Amid Anti-Trans Directive

Photo: The Trevor Project / Carrington Tatum / Shutterstock.com
Greg Abbot Trevor Project

As the most regressive states in the country make increasingly detrimental attacks the rights of LGBTQ people, Texas is now preventing this community from coping with the mental health impacts of their new bills.

While Florida continues to push their “Don’t Say Gay” bill, Texas has similarly considered writing more than 30 anti-trans bills into law in the last session.

As governor, Greg Abbott, and state attorney general, Ken Paxton work to deem transgender healthcare a form of child abuse, Texas is also committing trans erasure in other ways.

Texas’s Health and Human Services website removed LGBTQ youth suicide prevention resources.

As of February 1st, the Texas website for HHS had included the Trevor Project under a list of hotlines and resources for people to reach out if they needed assistance.

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They described it as “the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning young people under 25,” and included the organization’s website, phone number, and text line.

However, all that remained on February 5th were the 3 other hotlines and resources that were listed before: the Suicide Prevention Lifeline, the Veterans Crisis Line and the Crisis Text line.

While the Trevor Project’s phone number can still be found in a downloadable PDF of resources under “Parent and Youth Suicide Prevention,” it no longer states that the Trevor Project is an LGBTQ youth-specific organization and it is no longer as accessible as before.

This proves Texas has no desire to protect LGBTQ-identifying youths.

Sam Ames, director of advocacy and government affairs at The Trevor Project, told NBC News that mental health is not a partisan issue — that removing suicide prevention resources from a government website “because they are specific to LGBTQ youth is not only offensive and wrong, it’s dangerous.”

“We’re talking about a group of young people who are more than four times as likely to attempt suicide compared to their peers,” Ames said, citing Trevor Project research. 

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“Especially during this time of unprecedented political attacks against LGBTQ youth, we encourage all youth-serving organizations and government agencies to learn more about The Trevor Project’s lifesaving crisis services and to publicize them to the youth and families who most need support,” Ames reaffirmed the Project’s support of all people, including Texans.

The Trevor Project is more neccessary than ever in the face of Abbott's recent action.

After a recent anti-trans directive was introduced by Texas Governor Greg Abbott that labeled gender-affirming medication as “child abuse,” the Trevor Project has had to denounce the Governor and express their continued support of LGBTQ youth in the state.

“We remain steadfast in our support for transgender and nonbinary young people in Texas, the parents and doctors who care for them, and all of our volunteer counselors and crisis workers based in Texas and around the country,” they said in a press release.

“The Trevor Project served more than 14,500 calls, chats, and texts from young LGBTQ Texans in crisis last year.”

However, this isn’t the first time that Texas has removed LGBTQ resources from government websites.

Texas officials removed a webpage titled “gender identity and sexual orientation” and a page devoted to Texas Youth Connection, a program run by the Department of Family and Protective Services, which included a link to The Trevor Project after Abbott was criticized by his opposition for “supporting trans ideology” back in August 2021.

The page on sexual orientation and gender identity still shows an error message while the Texas Youth Connection website displays the same message that it did in October.

“The Texas Youth Connection website has been temporarily disabled for a comprehensive review of its content,” the website says. “This is being done to ensure that its information, resources, and referrals are current.”

These actions are part of a much larger attack on trans rights that the country has been seeing in recent years since society has been progressing too rapidly for transphobic people.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.