Kansas House of Representatives 2022 Candidate Survey The July 9, 2022 deadline for submission has passed. This form is left for informational purposes, but is no longer active. Section 1: Personal information Are you a member of Equality Kansas? YesNoNo Response Are you a member of the LGBTQ community? YesNoPrefer not to disclose Are you an incumbent office holder? YesNoNo Response If you are an incumbent, what is your current office and district or locality (if applicable)? Section 2: Non-Discrimination & Equal Opportunity Kansas currently has a non-discrimination statute called the Kansas Act Against Discrimination. It protects people from discrimination based on religion, sex, age, race, ethnicity, and national origin in employment, housing, and public accommodations. While approximately half the states offer protections based on sexual orientation or gender identity, Kansas does not. a. Do you oppose discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodation based on sexual orientation and gender identity? YesNoNo Response b. Do you support amending Kansas’s existing nondiscrimination law (which bans discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodation based on traits such as race, sex, and religion) to include sexual orientation and gender identity? YesNoNo Response c. If elected, will you co sponsor introduction of a bill adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the Kansas Act Against Discrimination? YesNoNo Response Beginning in 2011, controversial “religious objection” bills that would allow overt discrimination against LGBT Kansans have been introduced in the legislature every year. Some bills have targeted municipal non discrimination ordinances, while others have sought to deny participation by LGBTQ Kansans in taxpayer-funded programs, such as foster care and membership in university student organizations. In the 2020 legislative session, a bill was introduced that would allow health care professionals to deny treatment to LGBTQ patients. d. Do you oppose recent efforts by the Kansas Legislature to enact legislation that would allow health care workers, business owners, business employees and government employees to refuse to serve the LGBT community because of their religious objections? YesNoNo Response Under the Kansas constitution, cities are given the right of home rule to govern their own affairs. Over the past decade, more than 20 Kansas cities and counties have enacted local non-discrimination ordinances fully inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity, which now cover over one third of the Kansas population. e. Do you oppose recent efforts by the Kansas Legislature to undermine local non discrimination ordinances that include protections for sexual orientation and gender identity? YesNoNo Response Section 3: Marriage Recognition In 2015, the United States Supreme Court overturned all state laws banning the recognition of marriages of same-sex couples. In the wake of that ruling, some public officials have claimed “religious freedom” as a reason to deny service to same sex couples. Additionally, some businesses that serve the general public have also claimed “religious freedom” as a reason to deny service. a. Do you believe public officials, in carrying out their taxpayer-funded duties, must serve all taxpayers equally, regardless of marital status.? YesNoNo Response b. Do you believe businesses that serve the general public must serve all the public, regardless of marital status? YesNoNo Response c. In 1998, Kansas passed a state law banning recognition of same-sex marriages, and in 2005, the voters added that ban to the Kansas state constitution. Do you support repeal of the 1998 statute and the 2005 constitutional amendment? YesNoNo Response Section 4: Gender Identity and Expression The Kansas Legislature has seen at least four bills introduced that would ban the use of public bathrooms by gender non conforming school children. Two of them placed a “bounty” of $2500, to be paid to the reporting student, on any transgender or gender non conforming child caught in the “wrong” bathroom. Two other bills, vetoed by Governor Laura Kelly in 2021 and 2022, would have banned transgender children from participating in competitive school sports. a. Do you support allowing school children to use the restroom for the gender with which they identify? YesNoNo Response b. Do you support allowing school children to participate in all school activities for which they are qualified, regardless of their gender identity or expression? YesNoNo Response Kansas currently does not mandate coverage for medically necessary care, including transition care, when ordered by a physician. Prior to 2013, transgender individuals on Medicaid routinely had their treatment approved; however, since the privatization of Kansas Medicaid (KanCare), transgender patients are no longer receiving necessary care. c. Do you support mandating that KanCare provide medically necessary care, including transition care, when ordered by a physician, to transgender patients? YesNoNo Response Section 5: Foster Parenting, Adoption, and Surrogate Parenting a. Do you support adoption and foster care placements based on the best interests of the child, without regard to the parents’ sexual orientation or gender identity? YesNoNo Response In the 2018 legislative session, the State of Kansas passed a law which will allow taxpayer funded foster and adoption agencies to turn away LGBT families based on the agencies’ religious affiliation. b. Do you oppose attempts to use taxpayer dollars, in the provision of state services, by agencies that engage in discrimination? YesNoNo Response c. Do you support repeal of the 2018 adoption discrimination law? YesNoNo Response There are clinics in Kansas that provide in-vitro fertilization services to women, and most do not turn away women in same-sex relationships. In 2010 a bill was introduced that would have required the reporting to the state the names of same-sex couples seeking IVF therapy. In the bill, failure to report could have resulted in clinic workers being charged with a Level 10 nonperson felony. Kansas law currently permits surrogacy contracts for couples seeking to have children carried by third parties. It is not uncommon for same-sex couples in Kansas to also enter into surrogacy contracts, as they are not currently banned. In the 2014 legislative session, a bill was introduced, and quickly killed after public hearings, that would have imprisoned and fined mothers entering into surrogacy agreements. d. Do you support maternity/paternity rights for non-biological parents when gay and lesbian couples decide to start a family? YesNoNo Response e. Do you oppose any attempt to restrict or criminalize surrogacy, no matter the sexual orientation of the parents? YesNoNo Response Section 6: School Safety and Bullying Prevention In 2007, the Legislature passed a statute requiring public schools districts in Kansas to adopt policies and develop implementation plans to combat bullying. The statute currently lacks enumerations of protected classes, or any transparency or enforcement provisions. As a result, many school districts across Kansas are not in compliance with the statute. In school districts that have taken steps to follow the law, the quality of compliance varies widely. In general, those districts whose bullying prevention materials are readily available to parents have the qualitatively most comprehensive plans, where those whose materials are difficult to access place little to no emphasis on following the law. a. Do you support school district policies banning bullying of students based on sexual orientation or gender identity? YesNoNo Response b. Do you support requiring school districts to post their bullying policies and implementation plans online, and to file them with the Kansas Department of Education? YesNoNo Response c. Do you support requiring school districts to publish comprehensive data regarding bullying in their schools? YesNoNo Response Section 7: Conversion Therapy Conversion therapy, also referred to as “Reparative Therapy” or “Ex-Gay Therapy,” is a widely discredited practice that attempts to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Practices to “cure” individuals of their same-sex sexual orientations and transgender identities include several techniques ranging from shaming to hypnosis to inducing vomiting to electric shocks. Teens whose parents tried to change their sexual orientation had three-fold higher odds of having ever attempted suicide, and those whose parents enlisted the help of a professional (therapist or religious leader) to change their sexual orientation had a five-fold higher odds of having ever attempted suicide. a. Do you support a ban on the practice of “conversion therapy” on minors? YesNoNo Response b. Do you support suspending or revoking the licenses of medical professionals who attempt “conversion therapy” on minors? YesNoNo Response Section 8: Criminalization of Same-Sex Relationships In 2003, the US Supreme Court decided in Lawrence v. Texas that criminalizing consensual acts between same sex partners (defined as sodomy) is unconstitutional. It is important to note that just because the courts have ruled a statute unconstitutional, that does not compel a state legislature to remove it from the statute books. That is the case here in Kansas: Although the Kansas statute criminalizing same-sex sodomy is technically unenforceable, it remains the law in this state, and has been used to justify official harassment of LGBT Kansans. The Kansas law currently states that acts between members of the same sex is a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in prison and a $1000 fine. a. Do you support repealing Kansas’s criminal ban on same-sex relationships, which is unconstitutional and unenforceable after the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision? YesNoNo Response Section 9: Justice for Crime Victims Kansas has had a hate crimes statute on the books since 1993 that includes “sexual orientation” among its protected classes. a. Do you support tracking and reporting statistics on crimes motivated by bias based on sexual orientation or gender identity? YesNoNo Response b. Transgender Kansans have become more frequent victims of violence, including a recent Wichita murder, because of their gender identity. Do you support amending our state hate crimes statute to include gender identity? YesNoNo Response Last section: Other Comments The July 9, 2022 deadline for submission has passed. This form is left for informational purposes, but is no longer active.