Human Rights Campaign Denounces Federal Bill That Would Impose Sweeping ‘Don’t Say Gay or Trans’ Restrictions Nationally

by Delphine Luneau

If Enacted, Discriminatory Legislation Introduced in House of Representatives Would Erase LGBTQ+ Identities from Education System

WASHINGTON — The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) — the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization — today denounced a bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Republican Rep. Mike Johnson of Louisiana that seeks to forbid any acknowledgement of a person’s LGBTQ+ status in many educational settings.

Human Rights Campaign Government Affairs Director David Stacy released the following statement:

“Extremist House Republicans like Mike Johnson are continuing their assault on LGBTQ+ Americans’ ability to live their lives openly and honestly. A federal ‘Don’t Say Gay or Trans’ bill – modeled after the controversial discriminatory law in Florida and aiming to drive LGBTQ+ families and teachers out of the education system – is their latest cruel attempt to stigmatize and marginalize the community, not in an attempt to solve actual problems but only to rile up their extremist base. All students deserve to feel safe and welcomed in schools, but politicians like Mike Johnson are using the levers of government to dictate to children, their parents, and their educators what they can read, what they can learn, what they can say and who they can be.
“The stakes in this election couldn’t be clearer. Will the House of Representatives continue to advance legislation like the Equality Act and the Respect for Marriage Act, or will it turn back the clock to the era of Jesse Helms and Jerry Falwell – banning books and silencing educators and sowing fear and division?”

The introduction of the House bill follows the passage earlier this year of Florida’s HB 1557, the “Don’t Say Gay or Trans” bill, which silences teachers from talking about LGBTQ+ issues or people, further stigmatizing and isolating LGBTQ+ kids and also undermining existing protections for LGBTQ+ students. The legislation — which has triggered major backlash from educators and students across Florida and the country — prevents teachers from providing a safe, inclusive classroom for all students. Alabama also enacted a similar law during its session this year as part of a package of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ+ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

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