Democrats seek to ban transgender parental notification policies

California Democrats are targeting one of the major topics surrounding schools over the past year.

California’s LGBTQ Caucus unveiled a new bill that would ban schools from policies that require parents to be informed if their child identifies as transgender. 

It comes after the fight has been central in school districts across the state, although none of the policies are currently enforced. 


The big picture: A group of Democratic lawmakers proposed Assembly Bill 1955 on Wednesday to prohibit parental notification policies. 

  • California Superintendent of Schools Tony Thurmond also joined the caucus on Wednesday to support the new bill, called the SAFETY Act. 

The backstory: Last year California Attorney General Rob Bonta filed a lawsuit against Chino Valley Unified School District against its parental notification policy. 

  • A judge granted a preliminary injunction against the policy, meaning school districts are unable to enforce them. 

Go deeper: Along with prohibiting parental notification policies, the SAFETY Act would also provide resources for parents and students regarding gender and identity. 

  • The bill would also ensure that teachers and staff are not retaliated against for refusing to follow a parental notification policy. 

What they’re saying: Asm. Chris Ward said that teachers should not be the gender police and violate the trust of their students. 

  • “Parents should be talking to their children, and the decision for a student to come out to their family members should be on their own terms,” Ward said. “The SAFETY Act simply ensures that conversations about gender identity and sexuality happen at home without interference from others outside of the family unit.” 
  • Sen. Susan Talamantes Eggman (D–Stockon) added, “The SAFETY Act is a critical piece of legislation that seeks to protect everyone on school campuses, especially LGBTQ+ students. When and how a person comes out is a conversation that should be reserved for a student and a parent, not arbitrarily forced on unsuspecting youth by a school administration.” 
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