Victory for parents no guarantee for future

Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Charlie Butts (

children playing on swing

Traditional values groups in Colorado have successfully fought back an attempt to undermine parental rights – but they're not letting their guard down.

Pro-family groups and parents delivered hard-hitting testimony and convinced a Senate committee to vote 3-2 to kill a measure that would have allowed minors to obtain psychological counseling – without parental notification or consent.

"This would be 12- to 14-year-olds," explains Debbie Chavez of Colorado Family Action. "Right now in the state of Colorado, minors can seek mental health care at age 15 without their parents' consent or knowledge."

The bill's proponents wanted to change that. "They wanted to lower that age originally to age 10 and [when] we raised the alarm ... they said [they'd] move it to age 12," Chavez shares.

Colorado Family Action questioned what the age-change would do legally and emotionally to the parent-child relationship.

"We know that when parents are involved in a child's life, suicide rates actually drop by 21 percent – and that the parent-child relationship is the backbone of a healthy society," Chavez says.

Under the proposed bill, children with same-sex attractions could have sought counseling that would affirm that view of life without their parents knowing until they received an invoice for the service.

Chavez says her organization is preparing for a new battle if the issue surfaces again in the next legislative session.

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