Wyoming’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill dies in the House
Wyoming's "Don't Say Gay" bill has failed this session, having missed a key deadline Friday evening.
The bill was a close copy of a law passed in Florida last year. In Florida, the law limits what can be talked about in public schools. Wyoming lawmakers drafted a similar bill this session.
Senate File 117 would have prohibited elementary school teachers from discussing sexual orientation or gender identity in the classroom. It also would have required school districts to tell parents about any change in their child's emotional or mental health — a provision that could force schools to out gay and trans students who have come out at school but not at home.
The bill made it all the way through the Senate and was sent to the House of Representatives. But House Speaker Albert Sommers (R-Pinedale) never assigned it to a committee. So the bill died last week when it missed the deadline to be heard by a committee.
Sommers said in a statement he believes the bill was unconstitutional and that it would have stripped schools and communities of local control.
Other representatives tried to force Sommers to bring the bill and assign it to a committee, but ultimately they couldn't get enough votes.
The bill was one of several pieces of anti-LGBTQ legislation brought by state lawmakers this year. Only one bill banning trans women from participating in high school sports is still being considered.