Judge tosses a revised challenge to Florida's parental rights in education law
Plaintiffs needed to show harm traced to the law that could be remedied by a favorable decision. The judge said most of the claims of harm come from the existence of the law, rather than enforcement.
A federal judge has again dismissed a lawsuit challenging a Florida law critics that restricts teaching about gender identity and sexual orientation in primary grades.
U.S. District Judge Allen Winsor in Tallahassee ruled Wednesday that a revised lawsuit filed by students, parents and teachers failed to show they had legal standing to challenge the law. The lawsuit had argued the new Florida law is unconstitutional.
According to the ruling, the plaintiffs needed to show they suffered harm that could be traced to the law and could be remedied by a favorable decision from the court. The judge said most of the plaintiffs' claims of harm come from the existence of the law, rather than its enforcement.
Winsor dismissed an earlier version of the case in September on similar grounds, and a similar lawsuit filed in Orlando was also dismissed in October.
Florida's Parental Rights in Education law prohibits classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity for students in kindergarten through third grade. Critics have dubbed this it the 'Don't Say Gay' law.
A report released in August by the Human Rights Campaign, one of the nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy groups, and the Center for Countering Digital Hate said that hateful references to gays, lesbians and other LGBTQ people surged online after Florida's Republican-dominated legislature passed the bill last spring. The law was championed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican.
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