Colorado legislature is working on catching up to the likes of CA and WA

Colorado legislature is working on catching up to the likes of CA and WA

On Friday, March 1st, the Colorado House debated and passed two bills that are aimed at protecting “transgender” people.

HB24-1071 titled, “Name Change to Conform with Gender Identity” would allow convicted felons to change their name to match their “gender identity.” What could possibly go wrong?!


Current law specifies the conditions a person must meet in order to change the person’s name if the person was convicted of a felony. Among those conditions is that the person must show good cause to be able to change the person’s name to a name different from the name the person was convicted under.

The bill states that good cause includes changing the petitioner’s name to conform with the petitioner’s gender identity.

There are a number of concerns with this bill. The first and probably most obvious is the ability of a convicted felon to use this law to change their name and potentially hide from law enforcement, making it difficult for law enforcement to track them or preventing their criminal history from showing up on a background check. If this bill were to become law, it would be easy for individuals to exploit the system and avoiding accountability. As an administrative concern, this would create additional burden for our court systems that claim they are already overwhelmed.

Personally, I believe adults can be called whatever they want. If Jim decides to be Sue, fine, whatever. It doesn’t make him a woman, but he has a right to whatever name he chooses. However, there are consequences for criminal behavior. Yes, people can redeem themselves, but there are still some rights they do not get to have…I think the ability to change your name and evade the system should be one of them.

The second bill that passed the House on Friday is HB24-1039 which would set new standards and set up a task force in the education system to allow for children to request to be called by a preferred name and would require the school staff to call them by this preferred name. The bill would establish that a school/staff would be guilty of discrimination if they did not call the child the preferred name.

The bill also creates the non-legal name changes in schools task force (task force) in the department of education (department) consisting of 9 members appointed by the department to examine existing school policies and provide recommendations to schools on how to best implement student non-legal name change policies.

  • Requires the department to appoint members to the task force by June 30, 2024;
  • Requires the task force to submit a report to the department detailing the recommended policy guidelines by January 1, 2025;
  • Requires the department to publish the report on its website and submit the report to the superintendent of each school district and chief administrator of each institute charter school by February 1, 2025;
  • Requires a school to implement the task force’s policy recommendations by July 1, 2025; and
  • Repeals the task force, effective July 1, 2026.

There is nothing in the bill that states this information would be kept confidential from parents, which is the case in many other states like CA, WA, NY and others. However, what we typically see with legislation is the “inch by inch” approach where the lawmakers will return in future sessions to build upon bills like 1039 and add clauses that would allow schools to keep this information from parents. Given the direction we see Colorado going, that would be a natural next step.

Citizens need to rise up in opposition to proposed legislation like this. These are efforts to fundamentally change our society and they’re primarily doing it through capturing the children.

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