A Republican-led House committee in Florida on Thursday passed a bill that bans discussions of sexual orientation and gender identity in school classrooms.
The Parental Rights in Education bill, also known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, passed Thursday in the House Education and Employment Committee largely along party lines and would bar educators from talking about LGBTQ+ topics, claiming it’s not “age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students.”
The legislation also allows parents to take legal action against their child’s school district and be awarded damages if they believe any of its policies infringe on their “fundamental right to make decisions regarding the upbringing and control of their children,” according to The Hill.
“This bill is about defending the most awesome responsibility a person can have: being a parent,” Florida state Rep. Joe Harding (R), who first introduced the bill, said Thursday. “That job can only be given to you by above.”
Harding’s bill, along with its companion bill introduced Tuesday by Florida state Sen. Dennis Baxley (R), would block teachers in Florida from talking about LGBTQ+ topics in school, which GBTQ+ advocates say will effectively “erase” LGBTQ+ history, culture, and students.