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ID governor signs bill to protect speech, conscience at public schools

High school classroom with teen girl raising hand

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Matt Sharp, director of the ADF Center for Public Policy, regarding Idaho Gov. Brad Little’s signing Monday of HB 538, a bill to strengthen existing law so that government entities cannot force employees and students at public schools to use inaccurate names and pronouns in violation of their sincerely held beliefs:

“No one should lose their job or face punishment at school for declining to say something they believe is false. Words and language carry meaning, and when used properly, they tell the truth about reality, feelings, and beliefs. Yet forcing individuals to say things that are untrue—such as inaccurate names, pronouns, and titles—imposes real harm on the speaker. In no world is it acceptable for schools to force good teachers out of a job all for the sake of promoting gender ideology to vulnerable children. Now and always, there are only two sexes—male and female—and denying this basic truth only hurts kids. With this legislation, Idaho is rightfully stepping into the gap to protect children and freedom of conscience. We applaud the Idaho Legislature for its leadership and Gov. Little for signing this bill to safeguard essential constitutional freedoms. All of society benefits when freedom of speech and conscience flourish.”

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Matt Sharp
Matt Sharp
Senior Counsel, Director of Center for Public Policy
Matt Sharp serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he is the director of the Center for Public Policy.