A bill in Washington state would prevent parents from intervening in their child’s decision to receive gender transition treatments.
Senate Bill 5599 would essentially allow host homes for runaway youth to house minors “without parental permission.” The host homes would also not be required to notify parents of their child’s whereabouts or tell them if they are undergoing gender transition procedures “if there is a compelling reason not to, which includes a youth seeking protected health services.” Per Fox News:
The “protected health care services” included “gender-affirming care,” which for minors arbitrarily included anything prescribed by a doctor to treat dysphoria, the bill said.
“Gender affirming treatment can be prescribed to two-spirit, transgender, nonbinary, and other gender diverse individuals,” the bill stated.
For minors, “affirming care” typically included puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and surgeries. It was unclear which services would be approved under the bill.
Shelters can contact the Washington Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) instead of contacting parents. The bill also states that a compelling reason not to notify parents about their child staying in a host home would be “circumstances that indicate notifying the parent or legal guardian will subject the minor to abuse or neglect.”
Democrat Gov. Jay Inslee has indicated he will sign the bill. Republicans have strongly criticized the bill for stripping parents of their rights as well as promoting child abuse.
“A parents job is to protect their child, this bill strips parents of that ability … Gender is in your imagination. This bill legalizes the kidnapping of children, allows for the harboring of minors, and segregates us from the union,” states opposition to the bill.
“The only thing [the bill] would do is cause harm by driving a wedge between vulnerable kids and their parents, at a time when a teen lacks the perception and judgment to make critical life-altering decisions,” said State Senate Republican Leader John Braun.
“A parent may not even know why the child ran away and could involve law enforcement or other groups in a desperate search … all the while going through an unnecessary emotional nightmare, imagining the worst about what might have happened,” he added.
Democrats have celebrated the bill for its support of LGBTQ children.
“I am speaking to youth across our nation, across our state, and our communities,” said Democrat Rep. Tana Senn. “I see you. I affirm you, that I hear you, that I love you. With this passage of the bill, we are saying Washington state does, too.”