California Governor Gavin Newsom last week signed into law a bill that, among other things, grants foster children the rights to obtain an abortion, even in cases of rape, without adult knowledge or consent and to force their foster parents to treat them in accordance with their chosen gender identity regardless of their biological sex.
On October 2, Newsom, a Democrat, signed AB 175, which was introduced by Democratic Assemblyman Mike Gipson and endorsed by a variety of left-wing organizations including the American Civil Liberties Union, the Stonewall Democratic Club, and the Anti-Defamation League.
The most egregious of the new "rights" the law grants to foster children is the freedom "at any age, to consent to or decline services regarding contraception, pregnancy care, and perinatal care, including, but not limited to, abortion services and health care services for sexual assault without the knowledge or consent of any adult." In other words, foster children can obtain abortions, most likely at taxpayer expense, at any time they wish and for any reason they wish, including to cover up rape, and their foster parents need not even know about it, let alone consent to it. (The law also grants foster children 12 and older the freedom to "consent to or decline" testing for sexually transmitted diseases.)
"Foster parents care deeply about their children, and desperately want to protect them from abuse," said California Family Council (CFC) President Jonathan Keller. "But how can they do this if the state keeps them in the dark, even in cases of rape?"
Indeed, California is going out of its way to keep foster parents from learning anything about their charges' personal lives. The law mandates that foster kids be allowed "to make, send, and receive confidential telephone calls and all other electronic communications, and to send and receive unopened mail," to "maintain a bank account and manage personal income," and to "be free from unreasonable searches of personal belongings." It also grants them the right to Internet access.
While this would be bad policy concerning any child, it is particularly dangerous when it comes to foster children, who are at great risk for being caught up in sex trafficking. According to the California Globe, "The FBI reports that 60 percent of all child sex trafficking victims have histories in the child welfare system."
"Given how many children are stalked on the Internet by sexual predators, this bill appears to play right into their hands," observed the Globe. "The only umbrella of protection foster children receive through foster parents could be removed [by the new law]."
With Democrats fully committed to the LGBT agenda, it comes as no surprise that the law also gives foster children new "rights" related to sexual orientation and gender expression. A foster child now has the right to be placed in a foster home "according to their gender identity," regardless of the child's biological sex, "to be referred to by the child's preferred name and gender pronoun," and "to maintain privacy regarding sexual orientation and gender identity and expression." Foster parents are required to undergo training related to LGBT issues, and they must provide "clothing and grooming and hygiene products" that "respect the child's ... gender identity and expression."
"It is wrong to teach foster kids they have a right to force another person to say words that a person doesn't believe. In any other context this would be unthinkable," said CFC Director of Capitol Engagement Greg Burt. "When a child or even an adult tries to make another person say something that contradicts that person's belief system, it's rude and obnoxious. But when a government gets involved and tries to mandate the words that come out of a person's mouth, it's tyrannical."
The whole law, in fact, is tyrannical, undermining foster parents' authority and making it impossible for them to exercise any oversight over the children placed in their care. As Keller put it, "It seems Governor Newsom expects these brave foster parents to merely provide room and board while kids run their own lives. No good mom or dad would neglect their kids this way."
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