The future of gender identity in Wisconsin

Damien K, Hour 5B

Do you know anyone close to you that is in the LGBTQ+ community? There is a struggle happening in Wisconsin and we need to face it. There is only just a small handful of the LGBTQ+ community in Wisconsin and some of them are struggling to find the help that they need. 

There are struggles that the LGBTQ+ community faces in Wisconsin and we need to change that for the future.

Gender identity gender treatment
How is it so hard trying to find help in Wisconsin to get treatment for gender identity?

It’s hard trying to find help in many different counties because of how small they are in Wisconsin, Wisconsin is a more conservative state which could cause there to be fewer places to get treatment for helping gender identity. A quote from Krewe Kvatek, a junior at SPASH high school says, “It’s quite the conservative community, and people aren’t as understanding as you think they would be.”. There are more conservatives in the state of Wisconsin than people who lean toward the left side and not a lot of people understand that. Not many conservatives are very understanding of transitioning and gender identity, along with the LGBTQ+ community.

Another quote from Juno Ehlenfeldt, a senior from SPASH high school says, “Wisconsin is a more conservative-leaning state… If someone wanted to try to set up a place to help LGBTQ+ folks either with therapy or medical help, it would get a lot of pushback from the right-leaning people around the smaller towns, which makes it safer and easier for doctors to set up in larger areas.”. This means there is more of a conservative population than any other, with only a handful of people in the LGBTQ+ community. Someone wanting to set up a place in a small town could be shot down right away by people that lean toward the right side. This is why it is more common to have places with doctors in large towns and cities.

Shut down for being ourselves.
Many states are creating laws against the LGBTQ+ community and this is how some members feel about it.

There are over twenty states in the United States that have actually created laws against the LGBTQ+ community, banning different things that could be very harmful to the community and its members as well. Yet there are twenty-four different states that prohibit discrimination based on the sexual orientation and gender identity of a people. In an interview with Juno, they spoke out about how they feel about different states creating laws against the LGBTQ+ community, “I feel a lot less safe… More conservative states could put in bills to make it actively harder to be gay in the state like Floridas’s don’t say gay bill.”. In other words, the idea of the states now being able to change things so quickly and ban people from trying to be who they truly are is scaring so many different members of the LGBTQ+ community. Thinking that the states won’t be able to protect the youth and the LGBTQ+ community as well.

Another quote by The battle over gender therapy in an article by Emily Bazelon states, “Arkansas passed the first such ban in April 2021, and over the next months, similar bills were introduced in eighteen other Republican-led state legislatures.”. There are so many more laws coming out of nowhere from different states that are banning different things that could help out transgender youth and the LGBTQ+ community. There are bans mostly coming from more Republican-led states than actual Liberal-led states.

Insurances aren’t covering help.

How insurance isn’t covering different medical prescriptions and surgeries for transgender people.

Many people believe that a company’s insurance should cover transitioning medical help like medication and surgery.  Yet there are still companies out there that don’t cover that which causes outrage to many members of the LGBTQ+ community, there are only a few insurances that actually do cover transitioning medication and surgery. This is how a few members of the community feel when asked if it was fine for insurance to not cover the medication and surgery for transgender people. A senior at SPASH high school, “No, if you’re paying for insurance it should pay for medical bills that should pay for it.”. If the insurance would cover normal medical bills it should be able to cover different medical treatments that transgender people need for transitioning to the identity that they are actually comfortable with.

 In an interview with another Junior, they said, “No, because of how it could impact the mental health of the person being denied of this care that they need.”. Without insurance covering the needs that a transgender person needs for transitioning this could cause problems to the person’s mental health such as depression, anxiety, and many other things as well, this could also impact how they act causing them to be lower, not motivated or willing to do things. Being denied the care that they need could cause their self-esteem to rapidly go down.

There is a major difficulty for youth and LGBTQ+ members in Wisconsin but many people don’t see that or just turn a blind eye to them. We need to face what is happening and change it all for the good, we just want to be ourselves.