A Message from Dean Fallin: Supporting our LGBTQIA+ Community

March 30, 2023

Message sent on behalf of Dean M. Daniele Fallin 

 Dear Rollins Community,

Late last week, Senate Bill 140 was signed into law in Georgia, which bans doctors from treating transgender people under 18 with hormone replacement therapy and most gender affirmation surgeries. As a mother, and as a public health advocate, I am deeply concerned about the impact this decision will have on Georgia’s youth. Public health research has shown the risks of preventing gender-affirming care, which includes suicidal ideation, anxiety, and depression, as well as the real possibility that patients may seek nonmedically supervised treatments that are potentially dangerous.   

Statements issued by the Pediatric Endocrine Society and American Academy of Pediatrics and the new Standards of Care issued by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health all speak to these concerns. 

I understand that many in our community not only recognize the public health impact of this legislation, but are also impacted personally. I wanted to acknowledge that difficult experience and reaffirm our school’s commitment to LGBTQIA+ health and to public mental health. Tomorrow is International Transgender Day of Visibility. Your colleagues and peers see and support you. 

If you are seeking emotional support at this time, Emory provides mental health services through the Faculty Staff Assistance Program,  Counseling and Psychological Services, and Office of Spiritual and Religious Life. Please also continue to count on your friends and community members at Rollins to serve as sources of comfort and support. 

At ASPPH’s annual meeting a couple of weeks ago, the incoming chairman of the board shared his commitment to addressing hate as a public health issue, suggesting it is at the root of many policies and behaviors that harm health, including state legislation efforts that limit rights of LGBTQIA+ communities. As a Rollins community, let us continue to extend kindness and understanding to each other as we promote public health.   


Daniele Fallin, PhD
James W. Curran Dean of Public Health
Rollins School of Public Health
Emory University