The Florida Legislature is working on passing a bill nicknamed the Parental Bill of Rights. This bill would allow parents to opt their children out of sex education, science, vaccines and broaden mandatory reporting of school staff.

Currently, school staff are required to mandatorily report when a child is being abused, contemplating hurting themselves or someone else. If this bill were to become law, it would broaden mandatory reporting requirements to force staff to report to parents when a child comes out as LGBTQ+.

As a LGBTQ+ woman and parent, I cannot think of a more dangerous situation. Lawmakers and the public must understand that LGBTQ+ youth disproportionately experience abuse, homelessness and suicide more than any other youth group. Our schools are already overwhelmed with rules and regulations.

A teen in Haines City found out how harmful coming out to a parent who may not understand what is going on or think, incorrectly, that there is something wrong with their child. He dropped his son off on the side of the road, with just the clothes on his back last month — just because he told his dad he’s gay.

Taylor Aguilera, concerned parent, LGBTQ+ rights activist, Auburndale