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HRC blasts Idaho bill that could force LGBTQ students to be outed by schools

"It’s disturbing that Idaho has now moved another step towards forcing schools to out LGBTQ+ students."

By Emily Maskell

Idaho proposes anti-LGBTQ legislation. (Image: Pexels)
Idaho proposes anti-LGBTQ legislation. (Image: Pexels)

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has blasted a terrifying bill in Idaho that could see LGBTQ students forced out by their schools.

H 163 has been passed by the both the State’s House of Representatives and Senate.

Writing on Monday (13 March) HRC warned that if the bill is signed into law it could “further marginalize youth across Idaho and put them in personal danger.”

The ‘Parental Rights’ bill proposes to amend “existing law to provide for certain disclosures and school policies.”

HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow labelled the proposed bill as “disturbing.”

They added: “The decision of when to come out to your family and loved ones is a deeply personal one.

“LGBTQ+ people deserve the dignity to make that decision on our own terms.

“It’s disturbing that Idaho has now moved another step towards forcing schools to out LGBTQ+ students to parents who may not be supportive.”

Idaho’s Senate has also passed S 1016, an anti-trans bathroom bill. The legislation expressly allows public work contractors to refuse to provide transgender people access to bathrooms consistent with their gender identity.

So far in 2023, HRC is actively tracking more than 410 anti-LGBTQ+ bills that have been introduced in statehouses across the country.

Around 180 of those bills, if signed into law, would restrict the rights of transgender people.

Worryingly, that would be the highest number of bills targeting transgender people in a single year to date.

In Tennessee, last Thursday (9 March), Governor Bill Lee signed in two anti-LGBTQ+ bills. Tennessee became the first state to explicitly ban drag shows in public spaces.

President Biden has described the wave of anti-LGBTQ legislation as “close to sinful.”