Watch CBS News

Demonstrators forcibly removed from Texas Capitol for protesting bill that would ban gender-affirming care for trans youth

Hundreds of demonstrators filed into the Texas Capitol in Austin on Tuesday to protest S.B. 14, a bill that would ban gender-affirming care for trans youth in the state. Some demonstrators were forcibly removed from the building by police, sparking outrage from LGBTQ+ rights groups.

In video captured by CBS affiliate KEYE-TV's Michael Adkison, Department of Public Service officers were seen corralling demonstrators and forcing them out of the building. The officers could be heard yelling "Move, let's go!" at protestors, who were chanting "Trans rights" in support of LGBTQ+ youth.

Some of the demonstrators refused to leave, prompting "heated scuffles" and leading to advocates being forced out of the building, KEYE reported. At one point, a group of counterprotesters got into shouting matches with LGBTQ+ rights supporters before leaving the premises, KEYE reported.

"We are deeply disturbed by and closely monitoring what has happened at the Texas Capitol. We witnessed violence and arrests today against Texans, many of whom are queer and transgender and who would be harmed directly by this bill," All In For Equality, a group comprised of the ACLU of Texas, Equality Texas and other advocacy groups, said in a statement.

The Texas Freedom Network tweeted that prominent trans activist Sofia Sepulveda, the Community Advocacy and Engagement Manager at Equality Texas, has been banned from entering the Capitol building for a year after dropping a banner in the rotunda that read "let trans kids grow up."

"Loving families, community members, and advocates were here peacefully protesting an extremist ban on transgender healthcare that puts the lives of our youth at risk. None of them deserved criminalization or brutality," the group wrote in another tweet.

"LGBTQ+ people are here to stay — and we won't let anyone roll back our rights," wrote the Human Rights Campaign, adding that the bill represented "attempts to harm our community across the Lone Star State."

The bill, which has already passed the state Senate, was surprisingly sent back to committee in the House following the demonstrations, KEYE reported. A substitute bill was considered and approved by a 6-5 vote. It was not clear when that bill would be reintroduced.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.