In the News

What you need to know about the 'Don't Say Gay' bill

On March 8, the Florida Senate passed the Parental Rights in Education Bill (dubbed the "Don't Say Gay Bill" by critics). This bill would prohibit classroom discussions about sexual orientation and gender identity in primary schools. There's no doubt that this news is a lot to process, so here's the rundown on the legislation.

What the bill is

The bill bans "classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity" in kindergarten through third grade—and prohibits teaching about the topic in manners that are not considered "age appropriate" (which someone poeple believe could extend to all grade levels). Parents can pursue legal action against school districts for any violations (NBC News).

It was first passed by the Florida House of Representatives on Feb. 24, and now that the Senate also approved the bill, it's headed to Gov. Ron DeSantis' desk—where it could be signed into law.

LGBTQ+ advocates have denounced the bill, stating that it will harm queer students by discouraging representation and inclusivity. They believe that banning discussions about sexuality could cause students to feel ashamed about (and even suppress) their identities.

What you can do 

How to help if you oppose the bill? There are plenty of ways to get involved. Some Florida students have been participating in walkouts and protests to get the attention of politicians. If you notice a safe protest or walkout taking place in your area, consider asking a friend or parent to go with you. You can also send letters to lawmakers in Florida to voice your opposition. Do some research and have meaningful conversations with friends and family members (make sure to listen to what everyone says and explain your perspective, too).

If you're an LGBTQ+ student seeking support, visit The Trevor Project's website for 24/7 help. You can speak to a counselor, connect with other LGBTQ+ friends and find answers to questions.

Looking for more LGBTQ+ content? Check out these related posts: 
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🏳️‍🌈  4 LGBTQIA+ short films you should check out 
🏳️‍🌈  You *need* to add these LGBTQ+ artists to your playlist asap 

 All GIFs via GIPHY


by Eva Mandelbaum | 3/9/2022