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A group of lawmakers in Guatemala has advanced a bill that would stigmatize transgender people and curtail children’s and adolescents’ rights to education, information, and health, Human Rights Watch said today. Congress should reject the bill and instead address the violence and discrimination that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people face in the country. Bill 5940 uses the rhetoric of protecting children and adolescents from “gender identity disorders” to justify a patently discriminatory measure that would ban the dissemination of any information about transgender identity in school sex education curricula. The bill would also require media outlets to label programs with transgender content, which the bill likens to pornography, as “not recommended” for children under 18. “Bill 5940 is unscientific and stigmatizes transgender people as a corrupting influence, harmful to children,” said Cristian González Cabrera, LGBT rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Lawmakers should aim to promote tolerance, not demean a vulnerable minority, especially given the high levels of anti-trans violence in Guatemala.”

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