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Exceptionally challenging

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Polly Crozier, left and Jordan Budd A 2022 year in review list for LGBTQ Families What were the major advances — and setbacks — for LGBTQ families in 2022?

I asked several leading experts to share their thoughts. They all agreed there had been many obstacles, but they also all found reasons for hope. “This year has been exceptionally challenging for LGBTQ parents and their children,” said Sarah-Kate Ellis, president and CEO of LGBTQ media organization GLAAD, noting “the introduction of more than 300 anti-LGBTQ bills, many of which target queer and trans youth.

States like Texas introduced directives for families to be investigated by child services for offering their kids trans-affirming healthcare.” And in Florida, “conversations about LGBTQ identities and families are being barred from classrooms via DeSantis’ ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill. “Unfortunately,” she added, “no matter the lifespan of anti-LGBTQ legislation, the damage is already done simply by their introduction.

When lawmakers keep trans kids from participating in school athletics, or ban books on what it means to be nonbinary, they are effectively telling LGBTQ kids and their families that they are not interested in their safety, health, or wellbeing.” The anti-LGBTQ bills also brought “a resurgence of dangerous anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric that attempts to cast LGBTQ+ people and anyone who supports us as ‘groomers’ or ‘pedophiles,’” said Shelbi Day, chief policy officer at Family Equality. “We cannot stand for this hateful, fear-based rhetoric and must call it out for what it is — unacceptable, harmful, discriminatory fearmongering that has no basis in reality and no place in our society.” Jordan Budd, executive director of COLAGE, the national organization for people

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