Amendments to “The Parents’ Bill of Rights,” Florida Statutes – Section 1014.

Introduction:

On October 29, 2021, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued a proclamation, calling for a special session of the Florida Legislature, to protect the citizens of Florida against mandatory mask and vaccine mandates. This includes vesting parents with the decision whether or not to mask their children; not the schools, school administration, or the school boards – parents. The Governor called for strengthening the enforcement of the protections in the Parents’ Bill of Rights, Chapter 1014, Florida Statues, and other related statutes as necessary to ensure Florida’s school districts adhere to the requirements of state law. Most of this introduction language comes right from the Governor’s Proclamation, which can be found at this link:

https://www.flsenate.gov/PublishedContent/Home/FrontPage/CalendarLinks/Links/2021%20Special%20Session%20B.pdf

The purpose of this Bill is to amend Section 1014 – Parental rights – so as to reflect the Governor’s requests, and those of the Action Radio / Citizen Legislature. This link is to the whole Section 1014:

https://casetext.com/statute/florida-statutes/title-xlviii-k-20-education-code/chapter-1014-parents-bill-of-rights

Proposed Amendments:

Section 1014.03 – Infringement of parental rights

This Section reads:

The state, any of its political subdivisions, any other governmental entity, or any other institution, may not infringe on the fundamental rights of a parent to direct the upbringing, education, health care, and mental health of his or her minor child without demonstrating that such action is reasonable and necessary to achieve a compelling state interest and that such action is narrowly tailored and is not otherwise served by a less restrictive means.

This section shall be amended by deleting after the word “child”, the phrase:

“without demonstrating that such action is reasonable and necessary to achieve a compelling state interest and that such action is narrowly tailored and is not otherwise served by a less restrictive means.”

Either rights are absolute within the context of the right, or they be not a right at all. The idea that the state can declare, or make up, language denoting a “compelling state interest” to violate the rights of parents, violates the basic principle of a right, which is that the government may not touch a right, nor the exercise of a right. This principle shall prevail throughout this bill. Section 1014.3 shall be amended to read as follows:

Section 1014.03 – The state, any of its political subdivisions, any other governmental entity, or any other institution, may not infringe on the fundamental rights of a parent to direct the upbringing, education, health care, and mental health of his or her minor child.

Section 1014.04 – Parental rights

To put this Section in context. Part (1) reads: “(1) All parental rights are reserved to the parent of a minor child in this state without obstruction or interference from the state, any of its political subdivisions, any other governmental entity, or any other institution, including, but not limited to, all of the following rights of a parent of a minor child in this state:”

Part (1)(c) reads: “The right, pursuant to s. 1002.20(2)(b) and (6), to apply to enroll his or her minor child in a public school or, as an alternative to public education, a private school, including a religious school, a home education program, or other available options, as authorized by law.”

Delete: “as an alternative to public education,” and “as authorized by law.” Add: private tutors.

Part (1)(c) shall be amended to read:

(c) The right, pursuant to s. 1002.20(2)(b) and (6), to apply to enroll his or her minor child in a public school, a private school, including a religious school, a home education program, private tutors, or other available options.

Part (1)(e) shall be amended by deleting: “unless otherwise prohibited by law.” It shall read:

(e) The right to make health care decisions for his or her minor child.

Part (1)(j) shall be amended by deleting: “unless the incident has first been reported to law enforcement or the Department of Children and Families and notifying the parent would impede the investigation.” It shall read:

(j) The right to be notified promptly if an employee of the state, any of its political subdivisions, any other governmental entity, or any other institution, suspects that a criminal offense has been committed against his or her minor child.

Part (2)(b) is deleted. It reads: (2) This section does not: (b) Condone, authorize, approve, or apply to a parental action or decision that would end life;

This is code for abortion. Ironically it recognizes and acknowledges that life begins before a parental action to end it. It’s hard to imagine the inclusion of this provision making abortion a parental right, when the letter and spirit of this law is about ensuring the protection of children.

Parts (2)(c) and (d) are deleted as they suspend and supersede the rights of parents clearly expressed in this Section. they read:

(2) This section does not: (c) Prohibit a court of competent jurisdiction, law enforcement officer, or employees of a government agency that is responsible for child welfare from acting in his or her official capacity within the reasonable and prudent scope of his or her authority; or

(2)(d) Prohibit a court of competent jurisdiction from issuing an order that is otherwise permitted by law.

Part (3) change the word “may,” to “shall” such that it reads: “shall be subject to disciplinary action.”

Part (4) the last sentence shall be deleted for the same reason as Part (2)(b), and reads: “This chapter may not be construed to apply to a parental action or decision that would end life.”

Part (5) New part, which shall read: Neither a parent or parents, school personnel or administrators, medical or health care workers or professionals, child protective services or other government officials with child interaction, nor anyone else, shall have the right or ability to change the gender or gender identity of any child, either through medical, psychological, or other means of coercion or influence. Parents have the right to protect their children from any entity trying to coerce, disparage, or change their gender or gender identity.

Part (6) New part, which shall read: The citizens of Florida, including parents over their minor children, have full body-autonomy and can not be forced, coerced, incentivized, or influenced in any way, into taking into or putting on their body, or their children’s body, a medical drug, product, vaccine, mask, device, or any other medical or psychological interaction, without full knowledge, understanding, and consent. No jeopardy or consequence shall be placed on their person, their employment, their assets, their family, their travel, their drivers license, any professional licenses, or any other factor that could possibly cause them to make any decision not of their own free will. Neither shall Baker Act seizures, nor Red Flag gun seizures, nor threats of such seizures, shall be used to force, coerce, or influence, a decision or choice not of their own free will.

Section 1014.05 – School district notifications on parental rights

Part (1) the first sentence reads as follows:

(1) Each district school board shall, in consultation with parents, teachers, and administrators, develop and adopt a policy to promote parental involvement in the public school system.

That sentenced shall be proceeded by:

(1) The rights of parents, including the right to protect their children, shall be supreme over the power and authority of school boards. No school board may take any action, create or enforce any policy, or have any standard, which violates or infringes upon constitutional rights, both federal and state, and the individual rights of parents to safeguard, protect, and guide the education of their children. All policies proposed or implemented by school boards shall be within this constraint, or any such policy shall be considered void. Each school board shall establish a grievance procedure for parents to challenge any action or policy of school boards. Each school board shall suspend such actions or policies until the grievances are settled. Failure to resolve grievances is grounds to petition the county elections officer for a special school board election. Elections officials shall schedule such special elections on or before the next regular election.

Section 1014.06 – Parental consent for health care services

Part (1) shall delete: “Except as otherwise provided by law.” And shall now read:

(1) A health care practitioner, as defined in s. 456.001, or an individual employed by such health care practitioner, may not provide or solicit or arrange to provide health care services or prescribe medicinal drugs to a minor child without first obtaining written parental consent.

Part (2) shall delete: “Except as otherwise provided by law or a court order.” And shall now read:

(2) A provider, as defined in s. 408.803, may not allow a medical procedure to be performed on a minor child in its facility without first obtaining written parental consent.

Part (3) is deleted. It says this section does not apply to abortion.

Part (4) is deleted. No interaction of children with clinical laboratories regardless of the services provided shall take place without obtaining written parental consent.

New Section 1014.7 – Enforcement for violation of parents and citizens constitutional rights

(1) Failure to honor, follow, and subordinate actions, laws, and policies to the federal and state Constitutions, shall result in individual, or in combination, fines, imprisonment, removal from public office, asset forfeiture, or other penalties as necessary to deter violations and ensure compliance, regardless of the extent of any emergency, real or imagined.

(2) The Florida Legislature and Attorney General shall develop and enact sufficient penalties to deter violations and ensure compliance as much as possible.

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