Maryland Gov. Wes Moore Signs Bills In Favor of Abortion Rights, Gender-Affirming Care

Maryland Democratic Gov. Wes Moore showed his support for women after signing bills protecting abortion rights and gender-affirming care on Wednesday.

According to CNN, Moore added Maryland to the list of Democratic-led states that have implemented similar laws that counteract Republican-led laws that oppose abortion rights and gender-affirming care for minorities.

“In our state, no one should ever have to justify their humanity,” Moore said at the signing. “In our state, no one should have to justify their own humanness.”

One mandate includes developing and implementing a reproductive health services plan at public colleges and universities. Another addresses that people alleged to have infringed upon criminal law outside of Maryland regarding acquiring or helping to acquire healthcare protected in Maryland are not required to provide testimony or evidence to judges. Additionally, individuals receiving abortion care can expect privacy due to a different measure requiring confidentiality and management of medical information being disclosed.

“While other states are dead set on ripping away reproductive rights and attempting to erase the existence of trans and nonbinary individuals, we’re doing the opposite,” Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller said in a statement. “We’re making Maryland a state that is welcoming, inclusive, and that safeguards the rights of all people.”

“I want to say to all the women who are out there who are wondering what will happen, who are worried about their future—please hear me loud and clear: Maryland will always be a safe haven for abortion access and abortion rights,” Moore said.

Changes will come for gender-affirming care beginning Jan. 1, 2024. Medicaid will be required to take a “non-discriminatory” approach to gender-affirming care coverage due to the Trans Health Equity Act signed by the governor.

Transgender healthcare has seen improvements with the introduction of over 120 legislative bills nationwide, according to American Civil Liberties Union data.