TPQC raising money for gender-affirming care

Sitting on the state line, the Quad Cities non-profit has a front-row seat to the impacts of gender-affirming care bans.

MOLINE – The Project of the Quad Cities (TPQC) has started to raise money and awareness for gender-affirming care on the Iowa-Illinois border.

Iowa signed a gender-affirming care ban for youth back in March, like almost all of Illinois’ neighbors. These bans have forced many families to travel for care. For eastern Iowa, the bi-state metro area of the Quad Cities offers a relatively close option.

“As neighboring states moved to restrict gender-affirming care for youth, TPQC realized we could play an important role in making this care available in our own community,” said Tyler Mitchell, communications manager for TPQC. “Given our physical location, we are legally able to provide GAC to youth in a safe, affirming environment.”

He said that families are being forced to leave for states that protect gender-affirming care. As the closest Illinois center for medical care for much of Iowa, the need for gender-affirming care in Western Illinois became more important.

Illinois does legally protect the care. However, outside of the Chicago metropolitan area, it can be hard to find. Many reproductive care clinics such as Planned Parenthood do offer hormone treatments and there are programs at institutions such as the SIU School of Medicine in Springfield.

With this initiative, Moline would be joining other border cities like Danville and Carbondale that can offer options for people in other states.

“For those in the trans and gender-diverse community, I think there’s a gratefulness for the close proximity to Illinois,” Mitchell said “Many youth patients were formerly traveling to Iowa City, which they can no longer do.”

And as in other border cities, the local community is supporting the effort.

“We hope that support continues so we can reach our initial goal of $100,000,” Mitchell said.

Money raised will go to pay healthcare providers giving gender-affirming care as well as administrative costs.

“While GAC for youth is not yet available, we are working as quickly as we can to secure the necessary funding,” Mitchell said. “We welcome any donations or support the community is willing to lend.”

To support the effort, donate at the TPQC website.

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