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Warning to California parents: You could lose your child under new gender affirmation bill, AB 957

AB 957 was sponsored by Democrat Assembly member Lori Wilson.
by WorldTribune Staff, September 11, 2023

The California State Assembly on Friday approved a bill, AB 957, which could strip a parent of custody of a child if the parent resists the child's gender transition.

The bill passed on Friday by a vote of 57-16. It was previously approved by the California Senate with a vote of 30-9.

This legislation, titled the Transgender, Gender-Diverse, and Intersex Youth Empowerment Act, seeks to prioritize the “health, safety and welfare” of children, placing a spotlight on affirming a child's gender identity.

Under the proposed law, parents who fail to acknowledge and support their child's gender transition could face potential consequences, including the loss of custody rights to another parent or even the state itself. The bill's supporters argue that it is in the best interest of children, aiming to create a more inclusive and affirming environment for gender-diverse youth.

Democrat Assembly member Lori Wilson, whose child identifies as transgender, wrote the bill and introduced it on Feb. 14. Democrat State Sen. Scott Wiener co-sponsored the measure.

“Gender affirmation” isn’t defined or explained in AB 957 or any other California law, drawing concerns over interpretation.

Susannah Luthi, who covers California for The Washington Free Beacon, pointed out: “The bill makes no distinctions regarding the age of a child, how long a child has identified as transgender, or affirmation of social transition versus medical sex-change treatments.”

Greg Price, communications director for the State Freedom Caucus Network, reported that bill author Wilson had said: “Parents affirm their children. Typically, it happens when their gender identity matches their biological gender. But when it doesn’t, the affirmation starts to wane. … Our duty as parents is to affirm our children.”

California resident Elon Musk, who owns X, the social media app formerly called Twitter, is parent to a child who claims to be transgender. He said of the legislation: "This bill is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. What it actually means is that if you disagree with the other parent about sterilizing your child, you lose custody. Utter madness!"

During a Judiciary Committee hearing on June 13, state Sen. Scott Wilk warned parents to leave California if such legislation were to pass.

“In recent years, we have put government bureaucrats between parents, children, and doctors when it comes to medical care — and now we have this where if a parent does not support the ideology of the government, [children] are going to be taken away from the home,” Wilk said, adding: “If you love your children, you need to flee California.”

Gender de-transitioner Chloe Cole, who first received gender-altering treatment at 13-years-old, and has since testified about the dangers of such procedures for minors before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, slammed the bill: "This issue is wildly unpopular yet the Cali Gov pushes forward with more and more radical policies," she wrote on X. "@ProtectKidsCA is trying to introduce ballot measures that will stop the sterilization of kids in California."

The bill now heads to Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk. He is expected to sign it by the legal deadline of Oct. 14.

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