California could soon require judges to consider whether a parent affirms their child’s gender identity when making custody and visitation decisions under a bill that cleared the state Senate on Wednesday.
The vote was split almost entirely along party lines, with Democrats arguing the legislation would help to protect the well-being of LGBTQ+ children whose parents are going through a divorce. Democratic Sen. Scott Wiener, who represents San Francisco, said the bill was a proactive measure.
“This is about not having to get involved after a child has been beaten and had their arm broken, or after they’ve been kicked out,” Wiener said. “This is about trying to make sure that something terrible does not happen to them.”
Every Republican in the state Senate voted against the bill, with state Sen. Kelly Seyarto, who represents Murrieta in Southern California, arguing that lawmakers were interfering too much with how parents choose to raise their children.