Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas), along with Senator J.D. Vance (R-Ohio), Josh Hawley (R-Missouri), and Marco Rubio (R-Florida), introduced legislation to stop state governments from discriminating against parents who oppose ‘gender transitions’ for children. The Guaranteeing Unalienable and Anatomical Rights for Dependents (GUARD) Act would make a state government ineligible for Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) funds if that state discriminates against a parent or guardian in custody disputes for opposing medical treatment, clothing changes, or social changes related to a child’s subjective “gender identity.”
“If you don’t let your kid ‘transition’ to the opposite sex, certain state governments will help remove them from your custody. It sounds like dystopian science fiction, but it’s happening in the United States of America. Our bill would take funding away from states that abuse their power by taking away parents’ rights simply for opposing radical gender experiments,” said Senator Cotton.
“It is deeply disturbing that states like California, Oregon and Washington, are threatening to separate families if the parents don’t agree that their little boy is really a little girl. The GUARD Act will help protect parents, ensuring that they can make decisions in the best interest of their children without interference from overreaching state authorities,” said Senator Rubio.
Text of the bill may be found here.
The GUARD Act would:
- Make any state government ineligible for Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) funds if they discriminate in child custody disputes, child services or cases against a parent or guardian based on their opposition to medical, surgical, pharmacological, psychological treatment or clothing and social changes related to affirming the subjective claims of so-called “gender identity” expressed by any minor, if such claimed identity is at odds with the minor’s biological sex.
- Create a private right of action for individuals to sue if they were subject to the prohibited discrimination. If a suit is successful, CAPTA funds granted to the state are required to be returned to the Treasury.