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Parental Rights to Children’s Records Passes Arizona Senate

April 18, 2022

By Corinne Murdock |

On Monday, the Arizona Senate passed HB2161, a bill prohibiting state employees, political subdivisions, governmental entities, or any other institution from withholding a minor’s records from parents. Parents may sue any entity or institution that withholds their child’s records in violation of the legislation. It’s likely that HB2161 will most heavily impact school districts.

The bill passed along party lines. State Representative Steve Kaiser (R-Phoenix), the bill sponsor, explained that the legislation would ensure recourse for parents whose rights had been violated.

The bill was transmitted to the State House for review of the amendments made in the Senate. If approved, the version passed on Monday will head to Governor Doug Ducey for his signature.

Democrats’ opposition to the bill focused on the impact on educators. One of the main arguments concerned the fact that educators wouldn’t be able to withhold the sexuality or gender identity of LGBTQ+ minors from their parents. 

Those arguments echo incidents making headlines nationally, in which parents discover that educators or school counselors coached their children into adopting a deviant sexuality or gender identity. Just this past week, it was discovered that a Massachusetts public middle school promoted the gender transitions of a pair of siblings without their parents’ knowledge.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

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