The Catholic Diocese of Cleveland, Ohio, created a policy for the 2023-2024 school year that bars the use of preferred pronouns, medical gender transitions and requires educators to inform parents if their child begins to experience gender dysphoria, according to the policy.
Bishop Edward Malesic and Chancellor Vincent Gardiner signed off on the policy on Aug. 30 and it took effect for its 79 elementary schools and five high schools on Sept. 1, according to Axios. The document explains that while the church should show “compassion and sensitivity” for those struggling with gender dysphoria, the diocese must adhere to the “truths and principles of Christ” on the issue of gender and sexuality. (RELATED: California Passes Bill Threatening Custody Of Parents Who Won’t ‘Affirm’ Their Kids’ Gender)
“The Church recognizes that there are and will be persons who experience gender dysphoria and/or gender confusion,” the policy introduction reads. “Such persons can be led to believe that gender and biological sex are entirely separate … As such, this view is contrary to the divinely revealed reality of our true, God-given human nature. Catholic Institutions must accompany people experiencing gender dysphoria and be committed both to providing a loving environment and to upholding the truth of God’s created reality.”
Under the policy, staff and students are required to go by their “God-given biological sex” and preferred pronouns are strictly prohibited. The use of an individual’s legal name is also required, but the diocese grants an exception for students struggling with gender dysphoria to have a nickname provided that the parents are aware and that it does not “obscure or contradict the person’s God-given biological sex, promote the idea that one’s gender is different than one’s God-given biological sex, or if doing so would cause scandal.”
The diocese also prohibited “so-called social transitions, surgeries, or medical treatments” for gender dysphoria, according to the policy.
“This includes, but is not limited to, puberty blockers prescribed or taken to delay puberty in those diagnosed with gender dysphoria, and hormone and surgical treatments to ‘feminize’ a biological male or ‘masculinize’ a biological female,” the policy reads. “For clarification, ‘social transitioning’ is the adoption of pronouns, clothing, haircuts, and other social expressions of gender or sex for the purpose of holding out oneself as being a sex or gender different than one’s God-given biological sex.”
Students and staff must use bathrooms that correspond with their biological sex, and exceptions will only be made at the discretion of the diocese for the “use of available single-user bathrooms,” according to the policy. Displaying symbols with phrases such as “LGBTQ Pride” or rainbow flags is not allowed, and all members of the school are barred from “publicly advocating or celebrating” sexual orientation in a way that is opposed to traditional Catholic teachings.
Those who act contrary to the policy are subject to limitations on their ability to partake in the community and, in some cases, disciplinary action, according to the policy.
The Diocese did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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