Staff Editorial: LGBTQ+ Youth Under Fire In Missouri Legislature

Potential Restriction of LGBTQ+ Youth

Staff Editorial

     Missouri is ranked 32nd in LGBTQ+ friendly states according to USA Today. Senate Bill 134 is a disgrace to the people of Missouri. Similar to Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill,  Senate Bill 134 would affect K-12 education, while Florida’s goes from kindergarten through third grade. The bill would prevent teachers from discussing sexual and gender identity with their students,

Grace Winkler

even in the curriculum. If a student shared with a teacher, that teacher would be required to tell the parent, or they could potentially lose their job.    

     Mike Moon (R-MO), from District 29 introduced the bill. And in this bill he states that teachers who would violate that rule would face charges of incompetence, immorality, and neglect of duty. They could also face the loss of their teaching licenses.

     Transgender individuals face 2.5 times more violence than cisgender individuals, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. The forced outing of these students could lead to higher suicide rates. In a May 2022 study by The Trevor Project, 45% of LGBTQ+ youth considered suicide in the past year. 

     If a student is outed by their teacher or counselor, and their parents don’t accept it, they could be kicked out of their home. According to The Trevor Project, 28% of LGBTQ+ youth have experienced homelessness or housing instability. 

    LGBTQ+ kids deserve safety. They should not have to live in fear at school and at home. Tolerance and acceptance is vital, and the way to promote that is by teaching children young that they need to support people of all genders, races and sexualities. By even considering this bill, Missouri’s State Senate is accepting hate and bigotry into law in the state.