FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 07/16/2021
Representative Jake Ellzey Authors Bill to Protect School Students' Personal Privacy and Women's Sports
AUSTIN, Texas – Representative Jake Ellzey (Midlothian) filed legislation (HB 217) prohibiting the "child's sex" listed on a minor child's birth certificate from being amended unless the change is to correct a clerical error, or to complete the birth certificate if the sex was not listed, or if the child is intersex and the sex is later determined.
The bill requires the birth certificate list the biological sex of the newborn. The doctor or person responsible for filing the paperwork must ensure the biological sex of the child is listed.
The current process to amend the "child's sex" listed on a birth certificate in Texas requires a court order. However, Texas statute does not specify what criteria a judge uses. So, it is up to each individual judge to decide what documents are required and what is the basis for them to approve a change of sex on a birth certificate.
"Unfortunately, in Texas there is court-shopping going on to find a judge willing to change the sex of a minor child's original birth certificate," Rep. Ellzey stated. "Once a minor boy’s birth certificate sex is changed, the boy is allowed in a girls' school locker room and showers even though that boy is still a boy. That's unconscionable, immoral, and abusive, and I'm here to try to stop it."
As part of the Governor's call for special session, HB 217 also protects women's sports. Since the University Interscholastic League (UIL) rules specify "gender shall be determined based on a student’s birth certificate…", HB 217 will protect girls' and women's sports for girls and women.
Rep. Ellzey stated, "Ensuring women are valued and rewarded for their fortitude, perseverance, and accomplishments in athletic competition is vital. We must ensure girls' sports are for girls."