An amendment filed this past Friday to the legislation that would bar discussions and course materials in Florida’s public schools, colloquially referred to as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, (HB 1557), would also require school personnel to inform a parent of their child’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
The author of the amendment, Republican Rep. Joe Harding, (R-Williston), the author and chief sponsor of HB 1557 also wrote and introduced the amendment.
The Republican-controlled Florida House of Representatives is set to pass the controversial measure that has received the backing of Governor Ron DeSantis on Tuesday. Democrats and advocacy groups have launched a full-scale campaign to derail the bill’s passage.
n an email to the Blade, Nadine Smith, the Executive Director of Equality Florida said: “We wish every home was an accepting one and that every young person was affirmed and celebrated by their families. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case for LGBTQ youth. They already make up 40% of the homeless youth population because they face higher rates of family rejection and abuse simply for being who they are. Knowingly subjecting children to abuse, abandonment, and neglect by forcing them to come out to their parents before they’re ready is cruel, dangerous, and underscores that this bill has no regard for the well-being of Florida’s youth”
Popular Information’s investigative reporter Judd Legum noted on Twitter that the bill’s sponsor, Harding, was retweeting a hardline national conservative group, ‘Mom’s For Liberty’ which is based in Florida, and has been actively campaigning in school systems across the U.S. to remove LGBTQ+ books and curriculum.