Report: California judges trained to question fitness of parents who don’t affirm kids’ preferred pronouns

by WorldTribune Staff, March 26, 2024

California requires all judges who handle child abuse and neglect cases to take a training course on LGBTQ issues which pressures them to question whether parents who refuse to use their childrens’ preferred pronouns should lose custody of their children, a report said.

Reporting for The Daily Caller News Foundation on March 26, Katelynn Richardson noted that the Judicial Council of California’s “LGBTQ+ Considerations” training instructs judges who handle the juveniles’ cases on how to handle youth gender identities, advising them to “be aware that LGBTQ youth may be at risk of harm at home, school and in other settings due to biased or uninformed attitudes or conduct by peers/adults,” according to a presentation from June 2023 obtained via a public records request.

The state legislature amended the law to require dependency judges to take “cultural competency and sensitivity relating to, and best practices for, providing adequate care to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth” in 2013.

The training lists five concrete actions judges can take: “conduct hearings in a trauma-informed manner,” “consider visible indicators that are in the courtroom,” “use the name and gender of the youth they request,” “insist the Department use their requested name and gender” and “be kind.”

Kate Anderson, senior counsel and director of the Center for Parental Rights at the Alliance Defending Freedom, told the Daily Caller News Foundation the public “must be assured that judges are receiving accurate information about the law.”

“Parental rights, free speech, and religious freedom are bedrock constitutional rights that every judge should protect when considering the specific facts of a sensitive dependency case or any other case that comes before them,” Anderson said. “It is deeply concerning that groups that actively advocate against these important rights elsewhere are providing training to judges behind closed doors.”

The DCNF previously reported that the Superior Court of Santa Cruz County hosted an activist in May 2023 to train judges on effectively using pronouns and addressing “gender identity” in the courtroom.

In September 2023, Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom vetoed a bill passed by the state legislature that would have required courts to account for whether a parent affirms their child’s gender identity in custody disputes. Newsom noted that courts are already required “to consider a child’s health, safety, and welfare” under existing law, which he said includes “the parent’s affirmation.”

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