The quiet closure of a gender clinic in Jackson, Mississippi, that reportedly offered transgender services to children has raised concerns with residents; the closure included a prompt deletion of its website.
According to WAPT 16, The University of Mississippi Medical Center has offered little information to protesters who are concerned by the prompt closing of the Center for Gender and Sexual Minority Health and said that dozens of patients allegedly weren't notified.
“It happened in the middle of the night. They erased all the information from the clinic off their website and the director of the clinic received an email," said one of the protesters, Jason McCarty, an executive director for the organization called Capital City Pride.
It is unknown whether or not the closure is related to the passing of Mississippi House Bill 1125, which was signed into law by the governor in late February 2023. The bill banned gender-transition procedures for anyone under the age of 18. However, the clinic reportedly came under scrutiny in 2022 for having offered hormone therapy and puberty blockers to minors, according to WJTV 12.
The UMMC website has approximately two dozen subsections dedicated to various centers, such as the Center for Tobacco Treatment and the Women's Health Research Center. Each has expansive pages with faculty, information, and mission statements. However, the section for the Center for Gender and Sexual Minority Health has been whittled down to a short statement after the website was allegedly shut down.
"The Center for Gender and Sexual Minority Health is dedicated to improving the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) individuals through clinical practice, research, education and community outreach," the site reads.
“UMMC will cease operations of the clinic at the end of this academic year, June 30, 2023," according to an email from Dr. Alan Jones to clinic providers, obtained by Mississippi Today.
"We have no comment," said Patrice Guilfoyle, director of communications for UMMC in response to questions regarding about the center's closure as well as whether the closure was do in part to the passing of HB 1125.
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