U.S. District Judge Liles Burke stayed a trial on Alabama’s Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act (VCAP) on Tuesday after the Supreme Court of the United States agreed to hear a similar case involving the state of Tennessee last week.

Governor Kay Ivey signed VCAP into law in 2022, which prohibits doctors in Alabama from performing transgender operations or prescribing cross-sex hormones and puberty blockers to individuals under 19. VCAP went into effect on May 8, 2022, but was blocked temporarily after Burke granted a preliminary injunction a few days later. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the injunction in January.

The ban is currently in effect in Alabama as litigation over the law continues. Plaintiffs representing various LGBTQ groups were in favor of staying the case until SCOTUS ruled. The Alabama Attorney General’s Office opposed the stay.

SCOTUS likely won’t rule on the Tennessee law that restricts transgender surgeries and therapies for minors until the summer of 2025.

Burke said in his order on Tuesday that it “would be unwise for the Court to invest the substantial judicial resources required to decide this case until it has further guidance from the Supreme Court on the governing standard of review.”

“These gains in judicial efficiency far outweigh any harm to the State from litigation risks that might attend the stay. And what’s more, the State suffers no prejudice from a delay in the final adjudication: stay or no, the State may continue to enforce its law,” Burke said.

stayvcap by Caleb Taylor on Scribd

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