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Parents, experts sound the alarm over blue state bill that seeks to prevent guardians from denying gender changes

Parents and legal experts condemned a bill that would label children “abused” if their parents don't allow them to get a sex change during interviews with the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The bill, HB 4876, would require parents to provide abortion services to their children, allow them to obtain sex reassignment or other cross-sex procedures, and if they do not comply, they would be labeled as child abusers. The legislation could allow the state to take children from their families if they fail to provide them with services, legal experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The bill's language could turn children away from parents who don't “affirm” their “gender,” Sarah Perry, a research fellow at the Edwin Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, told DCNF III of the Heritage Foundation. .

“We have already seen it happen. You've seen it happen in other states,” Perry told the DCNF.

Perry pointed to a case pending before the Supreme Court, MC and JC v. Indiana Department of Children's Services. The case involves a Catholic couple in Indiana who refused to call their child by pronouns that did not match the child's biological sex, prompting the Indiana Department of Child Services to remove the child from their home .

“It is not abusive to stand by this evil agenda and keep your child protected from it. REAL abuse is harming children by removing healthy parts of their bodies or interrupting their natural biological puberty with hormones” , Shannon Adcock, founder of Awake Illinois, a parental rights group, told the DCNF.

“Parents are understandably concerned that this bill will see them as 'abusers' simply to protect their child from gender medicine. Opposition to the bill has been immense and is quickly gaining national attention,” Adcock continued.

Another parent and a parent's rights activist expressed similar concerns about the proposed bill in Illinois. “When you redefine words you don't necessarily have to change the laws,” Alvin Lui, founder of Courage Is A Habit, a parent's rights activist group, told the DCNF. Lui said the bill would set a “dangerous precedent” and could allow a government agency to “remove custody” of children from their parents over disagreements of gender ideology.

Jeannette Cooper, a parent in Illinois, expressed the same concern. Cooper lost visitation rights for not calling his daughter by pronouns other than her biological sex, and worries that this law will be used as a weapon against other parents for doing the same. “People are afraid of losing their child to the state. As soon as they take a child away from the parents, that's trauma inflicted on the child. People are afraid of child protective services coming to their door.” , Cooper told the DCNF.

Adcock also shared concerns that the bill could be used by the legal system to remove children from their parents. “Our organization has serious concerns about the mandated implications for journalists of this bill, which could lead to parents being labeled as 'abusers,'” Adcock told the DCNF. He expressed concern that judges could “determine that the child is not safe” if a parent is deemed “abusive” after not “affirming the gender” of their child.

Two legal experts told the DCNF that the bills present legal problems and challenges to parents' rights in Illinois. “If you read the bill carefully, you will find that this bill is a disaster,” Perry told the DCNF.

The bill aims to make female genital mutilation illegal, but makes it child abuse if a parent does not allow a child to be reassigned. “One reason to challenge this law in court would be the fact that language like female genital mutilation conflicts with language like gender affirmation. Much of which we know involves genital mutilation,” Perry continued.

The law could be used by the state of Illinois to remove children from parents who do not allow their children to receive a sex change, Harmeet Dhillon, founder of Dhillon Law Group, a national law firm, and CEO and founder of the Center for American. Liberty, he told the DCNF.

“Parents should not be labeled child abusers simply for protecting their children from irreversible procedures like mutilation surgeries or unalterable hormone treatments. This bill blatantly ignores the irreversible consequences of so-called 'care for “gender affirmation” and tramples on parents' rights to guide their children's medical choices. It's an affront to scientific truth and parental authority, and any legislator who supports it should be ashamed of themselves,” said Dhillon in the DCNF.

Democratic lawmakers in the United States have introduced bills that would allow children to be reassigned without parental consent.

one invoice in New York would allow “homeless youth” to “consent to certain medical, dental, health and hospital services,” which some legal and parenting advocates told the DCNF is an attempt to hide gender transitions from parents. Another bill in California directed require judges to consider whether the parents were “affirming” their child's “gender,” but they were banned by California Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom in September 2023.

A law passed in Minnesota in April 2023 allows the state to have “temporary emergency jurisdiction” over a child present in the state if he “has not been able to obtain gender-affirming health care.”

Democratic Illinois State Rep. Anne Stava-Murray, the bill's author, did not respond to DCNF's requests for comment.

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