July 3, 2012 Print

Gay Sensitivity-Training Bill Advances in California

by Karla Dial

If prospective parents want to help kids in California’s foster care system, they could soon be required to first spend 40 hours in the classroom learning how to become more sensitive to children who may be confused about their gender or sexual orientation.

That’s according to a measure, AB 1856, pending in the state Senate. The bill passed the General Assembly on a 49-25-6 vote May 3.

According to the text of the bill, authored by San Francisco Democrat Tom Ammiano and sponsored by California Equality — the state’s largest gay-activist group — the government “would require the training for an administrator of a group home facility, licensed foster parent, and relative or nonrelative extended family member caregiver, to also include instruction on cultural competency and sensitivity relating to, and best practices for, providing adequate care to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth in out-of-home care. … This bill would provide that foster children also have the right to have caregivers and child welfare personnel who have received instruction on cultural competency and sensitivity relating to, and best practices for, providing adequate care to LGBT youth in out-of-home care.”

Should the bill become law, author Dale O’Leary warned, not only will it likely drive Christian couples away from becoming foster parents, but could also have a serious impact on children struggling with their sexuality.

“It’s very scary because children in foster care have already been seriously damaged.  You don’t get into foster care because you’ve had a perfect life,” said O’Leary, author of The Gender Agenda and One Man, One Woman: Redefining Equality. “A child who’s been sexually abused by a person of the same sex, (particularly if the child is a boy), is going to have doubts about his identity.

“And he needs help to get through that,” she added. “If we push homosexuality on him, or these gender-identity ideas, it’s just going to confuse him.”

The bill is based upon the premise that sexual orientation is an immutable, fixed trait — like race or eye color. O’Leary said that’s a false — and harmful — assumption, especially for kids.

“These are all totally unproven assertions,” she said. “There’s no evidence for them. One of the outcomes of sexual child abuse is concern about one’s sexual attractions and identity.”


Read the California AB 1856.

Read “Coming Out Puts Adolescents At Risk,” by Dale O’Leary and Dr. Richard Fitzgibbons.