Members of the Tennessee General Assembly are filing bills and anti-LGBTQ legislation is already showing up for the 2024 session. This list will be updated and revised periodically. It will also include positive legislation.
New Legislation for the 2024 Session
HB1605 by Rep. Bulso. The official summary notes, "As introduced, prohibits LEAs and public charter schools from displaying in public schools flags other than the official United States flag and the official Tennessee state flag." This bill would have an impact on the flying of Pride and Black Lives Matter flags at school and many other flags as well.
Bills from the 2023 Session
SB596/HB878 by Sen. Pody and Rep. Fritts. As introduced, states that a person is not required to solemnize a marriage if the person has an objection to solemnizing the marriage based on the person's conscience or religious beliefs.
SB1339/HB1215 by Sen. Johnson and Speaker Sexton. As introduced, prohibits any managed care organization that contracts with the bureau of TennCare to provide medical assistance from providing reimbursement or coverage for a medical procedure if the performance or administration of the procedure is for the purpose of enabling a person to identify with, or live as, a purported identity inconsistent with the person's sex, or treating purported discomfort or distress from a discordance between a person's sex and asserted identity.
SB1110/HB1386 by Sen. Bowling and Rep. Ragan. As introduced, enacts the "Marital Contract at Common Law Recording Act"; authorizes county clerks to accept and record a record of common law marriage between one man and one woman; limits the jurisdiction of circuit courts and chancery courts in cases involving the definition of common law marriage to the principles of common law marriage.
SB620/HB1414 by Sen. Pody and Rep. Todd. As introduced, enacts the "Families' Rights and Responsibilities Act", which declares that the ability of a parent to direct the upbringing, education, health care, and mental health of that parent’s child is a fundamental right. Note the language on gender identity in the bill.
SB1469/HB1447 by Sen. Johnson and Rep. Faison. As introduced, clarifies that prescribing hormone treatment for minors is not a standard medical practice when the treatment is for the purpose of enabling a minor to identify with, or live as, a purported identity inconsistent with the minor’s sex or treating purported discomfort or distress from a discordance between a minor's sex and asserted identity.
SB918/HB1319 by Senator Rose and Rep. Kumar. This is a caption bill with an amendment that would have the effect of restricting the display of flags such as Pride flags and Black Lives Matter flags on public buildings.
SB138/HB161 by Sen. Hensley and Rep. Eldridge. This bill regulates phones and tablets sold in Tennessee and filtering of material deemed harmful to minors. It appears to be dealing with pornography, but it could be used to filter LGBTQ content.
SB603/HB571 by Sen. Hensley and Rep. Carringer. As introduced, prohibits public institutions of higher education offering certain medical and health-related degree or certificate programs, and state contractors, from requiring diversity, equity, and inclusion training and education for purposes of the issuance of a degree, or the approval of a state contract or grant, as applicable. Note: It is not clear the extent to which the practice is occurring with respect to sexual orientation and gender identity in Tennessee.
How to Prepare for the Legislative Session:
1. Save the Date: February 13 is Advancing Equality Day on the Hill.
2. If you would like to be involved in the Balcony Brigade, contact TEP Nashville Co-Chair Brian Sullivan at [email protected] .
3. Once the legislative session starts in January, watch for weekly campaigns on key bills @tnequality on X/Twitter, Threads, and Instagram.
4. Join us for Friendsgiving at Frankie J's in Nashville on December 8. RSVP at the link.
5. Attend First Watch of the Balcony Brigade on January 9 at the Capitol. RSVP at the link.
6. Attend Pride Flag Day at the Capitol on January 22. RSVP at the link.