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California May Soon Become ‘Gender Affirming Care’ Sanctuary State

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Wesley J. Smith
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California looks to be well on the way to passing a bill that would treat refusals to allow puberty blocking, transgender surgeries, or other forms of “gender affirming care” as akin to how the law now treats child abuse and abandonment of children brought from out of state. From S.B. 107 which was to be heard in the Judiciary Committee today (my emphasis):

A court of this state has temporary emergency jurisdiction if the child is present in this state and the child has been abandoned or it is necessary in an emergency to protect the child because the child, or a sibling or parent of the child, is subjected to, or threatened with, mistreatment or abuse, or because the child has been unable to obtain gender-affirming health care or gender-affirming mental health care

If California is an inconvenient forum involving custody fights and other domestic law matters, usually the state’s courts will refuse jurisdiction. But this general rule will not apply to cases involving “gender affirming care” disputes:

In a case where the provision of gender-affirming health care or gender-affirming mental health care to the child is at issuea court of this state shall not determine that it is an inconvenient forum where the law or policy of the other state that may take jurisdiction limits the ability of a parent to obtain gender-affirming health care or gender-affirming mental health care for their child.

Usually, if a parent refuses to return a child to another state after visitation, California courts won’t take jurisdiction. But a specific exemption to this general rule is being fashioned when “gender affirming care” is at issue:

Except as otherwise provided in Section 3424 or by any other law of this state, if a court of this state has jurisdiction under this part because a person seeking to invoke its jurisdiction has engaged in unjustifiable conduct, the court shall decline to exercise its jurisdiction unless one of the following are true:…

In making a determination under this section, a court shall not consider as a factor weighing against the petitioner any taking of the child, or retention of the child after a visit or other temporary relinquishment of physical custody, from the person who has legal if there is evidence that the taking or retention of the child was a result of domestic violence against the petitioner…, or for the purposes of obtaining gender-affirming health care or gender-affirming mental health care for the child and the law or policy of the other state limits the ability of a parent to obtain gender-affirming health care or gender-affirming mental  health care for their child.

Out-of-state laws will not be enforced that go against transgender ideology:

A law of another state that authorizes a state agency to remove a child from their parent or guardian based on the parent or guardian allowing their child to receive gender-affirming health care shall not be enforced or applied in a case pending in a court in this state.

Nor will California cooperate with other states’ orders if it involves denial of “gender affirming care”:

(a) It is the public policy of the state that an out-of-state arrest warrant for an individual based on violating another state’s law against receiving or allowing their child to receive gender-affirming health care is the lowest law enforcement priority.

(b) California law enforcement agencies shall not make or intentionally participate in the arrest of an individual pursuant to an out-of-state arrest warrant for violation of another state’s law against receiving or allowing a child to receive gender-affirming health care.

(c) No state or local law enforcement agency shall cooperate with or provide information to any individual or out-of-state agency or department regarding the provision of lawful gender-affirming health care performed in this state.

(d) Nothing in this section shall prohibit the investigation of any criminal activity in this state which may involve the performance of gender-affirming health care provided that no information relating to any medical procedure performed on a specific individual may be shared with an out-of-state agency or any other individual.

One assumes that the last bit would include parents.

And no arrests or extraditions if it involves the provision of “gender affirming care,” nor extradition to a state with different laws on the issue than California’s:

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of state law, no state or local law enforcement shall make or intentionally participate in the arrest or recognize any demand for extradition of an individual pursuant to a criminal action related to the law of another state that criminalizes allowing a person to receive or provide gender-affirming health care where that conduct would not be unlawful under the laws of this state to the fullest extent permitted by federal law.

Will this bill pass? Almost surely. What political constituency is powerful enough to stop it?

If so, California will become a transgender sanctuary state, with a law that encourages transgender children to be brought to California to escape court rulings and laws of other jurisdictions when they go against transgender ideology.

This moral panic is really getting out of hand and is tearing the country apart.