A bill some fear will compel teachers and counselors to forcibly out LGBTQ students to their families is passing through the Florida legislature and some fear the consequences could be fatal. With passage in the House, the Parent’s Bill of Rights is one step closer to becoming law.
A growing number of LGBTQ rights organizations oppose language in the bill.
Section 3 of the bill states: “The Legislature further finds that important information relating to a minor child should not be withheld, either inadvertently or purposefully, from his or her parent, including information relating to the minor child’s health, well-being, and education, while the minor child is in the custody of the school district.”
Jonathan Mower of Equality Florida said, “This bill could compel schools to out LGBTQ youth who are facing unsupportive or dangerous household environments.”
Struggles with identity, safety and mental health continually plague the LGBTQ community. Last year, the Trevor Project released its National Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health 2020. The survey found 40 percent of LGBTQ youth seriously considered suicide; a third had been physically threatened or harmed; nearly a third were kicked out of a home and almost half sought counseling from a mental health professional but couldn’t get access.