Harrisburg, Pa. (WHTM) — A rally was held at the Pennsylvania State Capitol Tuesday to introduce HB 2813, also known as the Parental Rights in Student Health Care Act.
“This is a bill to protect our children from gender ideology and sexual orientation being taught in our schools,” said Rep. Stephanie Borowicz (R-Clinton County/Centre County).
HB 2813 states “it is the fundamental right of a parent or legal guardian to make decisions regarding a students upbringing and well being.”
Under the act, schools would not be allowed to offer instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity from kindergarten to fifth grade. Parents would also have to be notified of any health care services offered by the school as well as health care screening or questionnaires. The legislation also allows for civil action to be taken against the school if the act is violated.
Republican Cumberland County Rep. Barbara Gleim is a co-sponsor of the bill.
“I support the fact that we shouldn’t be having those types of discussions in elementary school,” said Rep. Gleim.
The rally also called out Pennsylvania schools for including books with what legislators called “pornographic images and content.” Some of the books contain life-like drawings or cartoons of sexual acts.
“You guys will blur out anything that is shown here today but yet these kids can check these books out in our school libraries. This is non-partisan.,” said Borowicz.
“If you see some of the pictures in these books, it is absolutely pornography. It has no business being in there,” said Gleim.
One Pennsylvania mom, Venetia Redman, filed a federal lawsuit after she says she found out her son’s school carried the following books:
- “Gender Queer: A Memoir” paperback, by Maia Kobabe
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Tantric Sex” by Judy Kuriansky
- “All Boys Aren’t Blue” by George M. Johnson
- “Push: A Novel” by Sapphire
- “Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic” by Alison Bechdel
“My 99-page federal lawsuit complaint details Pennsylvania officials ignoring porn,” said Redman.
The lawsuit names Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro and Gov. Tom Wolf as defendants. A motion to dismiss the claims against them has been filed.
“I stand with these men and women ready to defend our children. I will see you in federal court,” said Redman.
Redman encouraged parents to log on to their school’s digital library to see the list of books being offered at their child’s school.
The Wolf Administration says it supports schools and libraries that honor the dignity of others and enable learners to read and hear stories that reflect their personal experiences.
“Removing books from school libraries that focus on real, everyday life or true moments in history does more harm than good,” said Wolf.
Governor Wolf said he would veto HB 2813 if it reaches his desk and encouraged the general assembly to “focus on the real issues facing Pennsylvania’s schools and students this fall, rather than engaging in discrimination and bullying.
“HB 2813 is an effort to scorch individuality and normalize unacceptance. This legislation denies humanity by reinforcing homophobic ideologies,” said Wolf.