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Page history last edited by Rob Darrow 5 years, 11 months ago

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California Specific Laws / Timeline


2018 - Gender Recognition Act (SB 179, Wiener).

Adds a “non-binary” gender designation to legal documents including birth certificates and driver’s licenses and expedites name and gender changes in court documents. Impact on school district student information systems for a “non-binary” designation in addition to “male” and “female.”


2016 – Suicide Prevention Policies in Schools (AB 2246, O’Donnell)

Suicide prevention policies and training must be provided in public schools and must specifically address the needs of LGBT youth. 


2015 – California Healthy Youth Act - CHYA (AB 329, Weber)

Mandates the teaching of comprehensive sex education (CSE) in California public schools. Updated the state's sexual health and HIV prevention curriculum to provide instruction that is medically accurate, age appropriate and inclusive of LGBT people and their families; includes teaching about gender and sexual orientation, understanding of AIDS and HIV, and transmission of sexually transmitted diseases. This legislation ensured that all students have access to medically accurate and unbiased sexual health education. 

(Web: http://www.eqca.org/governor-brown-signs-lgbt-inclusive-sex-ed-bill/


2015 - Help Teacher Combat Bullying and Support LGBT Youth (AB 827, O'Donnell)

Gives teachers tools and resources to support LGBT students and create safer school environments. 

“The Legislature therefore encourages school districts, county offices of education, and charter schools to provide information on existing school site and community resources as required by subdivision (d) of Section 234.1 of the Education Code as part of a more comprehensive effort to educate school staff on the support of LGBTQ pupils.” 

(http://www.eqca.org/ab-827-help-teachers-combat-bullying-and-support-lgbt-youth/; http://lbpost.com/lgbt/2000007256-ab-827; )


2014 – LGBT Cultural Competency for Health Care Providers (AB 496, Gordon)

This law clarified that existing cultural competency training for health care providers should include discussion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues. Also redefines the term “cultural and linguistic competency” to mean understanding and applying the roles that culture, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression play in diagnosis, treatment, and clinical care. 

(Web: http://www.eqca.org/site/pp.asp?c=kuLRJ9MRKrH&b=8584587


2013 – School Success and Opportunity Act  (AB1266, Ammiano). 

This law affirmed that transgender youth have the opportunity to fully participate and succeed in schools across the state.  It restated existing California and federal law making sure students could fully participate in all school activities, sports teams, programs, and facilities that match their gender identity. 


The new law added to a national movement to end discriminatory practices and ensure transgender youth have the same opportunity to succeed as other students. Massachusetts and Colorado have statewide policies in line with AB 1266, and the Colorado and Maine state human rights commissions have held that state law requires schools to respect students’ gender identity. 

(Web: http://transgenderlawcenter.org/archives/3544


2011 – Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Act (SB 48, Leno, 2011)

This law required schools to provide general instruction and textbooks that include information on the contributions of "Native Americans, African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, European Americans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans, persons with disabilities, and other ethnic and cultural groups" particularly in the area of social sciences. The act also added sexual orientation and gender identity to the state's existing anti-discrimination protections that prohibit bias in school activities, instruction and instructional materials.

(Web: http://www.faireducationact.com/about-fair/)


2011 – Seth’s Law – (AB 9, Ammiano)  

Seth Walsh was an ordinary 13-year old middle school boy in Tehachapi, California. In 2010, he hanged himself from a tree. Investigations into his death indicated he was bullied over a long period of time because he was gay. 

This law, named after Seth Walsh, requires School Districts to:

  • Adopt a strong anti-bullying policy that specifically spells out prohibited bases for bullying, including sexual orientation and gender identity/gender expression.
  • Adopt a specific process for receiving and investigating complaints of bullying, including a requirement that school personnel intervene if they witness bullying.
  • Publicize the anti-bullying policy and complaint process, including posting the policy in all schools and offices.
  • Post on the district website materials to support victims of bullying.

(Web: http://www.eqca.org/site/pp.asp?c=kuLRJ9MRKrH&b=6586657 ) 


2007 – California Safe Place to Learn Act (AB 394, Levine)

This law specified the State’s responsibilities to keep schools safe and fight bias and harassment in schools by requiring that the State Education Department, as part of its annual monitoring and review of LEAs, assess whether they have complied with existing anti-discrimination and harassment laws and have corresponding policies in place. 

(Web: http://www.eqca.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=kuLRJ9MRKrH&b=4026609&ct=5195377


2007 – The Student Civil Rights Act (SB 777,  Kuehl)

This law protects students from harassment and bullying in public schools by making sure teachers and school administrators fully understand their responsibilities to protect youth. The State of California must afford all persons in public schools equal rights and opportunities regardless of their gender identity. 

(Web: http://www.eqca.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=kuLRJ9MRKrH&b=4026609&ct=5197703


2003 – California Comprehensive Sexual Health Education Law (SB 71, Kuehl) 

This act required that all materials and instruction be age-appropriate, medically accurate, and objective. In grades 7-12, classes must cover the safety and effectiveness of all FDA-approved methods for preventing sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy, including the use of condoms and other contraceptives (removed “abstinence only” instruction). Teachers must be properly trained in the subject. In addition, this act:

  • Required that instruction and materials shall teach respect for committed relationships as well as marriage. It removed all reference to “abstinence until marriage” to reflect that, if today's laws remain the same, not all students will have the right to marry their chosen life partner. 
  • Stated that sex education instruction and materials may not teach or promote religious doctrine or reflect or promote bias against any person on the basis of any category protected by the state’s school nondiscrimination policy, Education Code Section 220, which includes actual or perceived gender and sexual orientation.
  • Changed the language to make it more inclusive. For example, now, in grades 7-12, sexual health education must teach the value of abstinence from sexual intercourse in preventing pregnancy and the value of abstinence from sexual activity in preventing sexually transmitted diseases. 
  • Required that all instruction and material be appropriate for use with students of all races, genders, sexual orientations, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and students with disabilities.

(Web: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/he/se/preveducationltr.asp ;  http://www.gsanetwork.org/resources/legal-resources/sb-71-fact-sheet-california ) 


2000 – California Student Safety and Violence Prevention Act (AB 537, Kuehl)

This law prohibits discrimination in California public schools on the same grounds used to define hate crimes under California law regarding discrimination and harassment. This legislation added two new forms of discrimination in law including actual or perceived sexual orientation and actual or perceived gender identity. 
(https://gsanetwork.org/resources/legal-resources/ab-537-fact-sheet-california ) 


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