Parental Rights Alert: HSLDA/ Action Item issued an alert, today, urging Missourians to contact the state legislature in support of HB 513.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:

Section A. Chapter 1, RSMo, is amended by adding thereto one new section, to be known as section 1.250, to read as follows:

1.250. 1. (1) The liberty of a parent to direct the upbringing, education, and care of his or her child is a fundamental right.

(2) Neither the state of Missouri nor any political subdivision of this state shall infringe this right without demonstrating that its governmental interest as applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served.

 (1) This section applies to all laws of this state, and the implementation of such laws, whether statutory or otherwise, and whether adopted before or after the enactment of this section.

(2) Any statutory law enacted after the date of the enactment of this section is subject to this section unless such law explicitly excludes such application by reference to 11 this section.

Here’s the communication from HSLDA:

February 27, 2013Call To Support Missouri Parental Rights ActMissouri House Bill 513 (HB 513) would preserve the traditional right of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children – but we need your help to see it passed. HB513 faces a crucial vote in the Missouri House Committee of Children, Families, and Persons with Disabilities, and that vote could come at any time.

A parent’s traditional right to raise their children according to their own conscience and belief was unquestioned in America until 2000. In that year the Supreme Court’s Troxel v. Granville decision failed for the first time to respect the rights of parents on par with other fundamental rights.

Since that decision, 24 lower courts have revealed an erosion of respect for parental rights as well – largely because legislatures have not yet stepped up to make sure these rights remain protected with clear legislation.

The time for silence is over. The Missouri legislature needs to say loud and clear that parental rights are worth protecting, and not to be left to the whim of judges.

Action Item

Please visit and enter your zip code in the search box to find your state representative. Then, if your representative is on the list below, please call him or her and urge support for HB 513. Your message can be as simple as, “Please vote yes on HB 513. The rights of parents need to be protected by statute, not left to the shifting whims of judges.” Or you can form your own message from among the talking points below.

Committee members with an asterisk are already cosponsors of the bill. W encourage you to still call them, but also thank them for being a cosponsor when you call.

Contact Information

Jeff Grisamore, Chairman573-751-1456  Rick Brattin*573-751-3783  Elaine Gannon573-751-7735 
Elijah Haahr*573-751-2210  Andrew Koenig*573-751-5568  Sue Meredith573-751-4183 
Genise Montecillo573-751-9472  Jim Neely573-751-0246  Stacey Newman573-751-0100 
Time Remole573-751-6566 Jill Schupp573-751-9762

Talking Points

HB 513 is designed to protect your parental rights as “fundamental.” Fundamental rights require a high level of legal protection, and only a “governmental interest of the highest order,” or a “compelling government interest,” can override such a right. Otherwise, the government only needs to show some “rational basis” for violating your right – and that is really no right at all.

So here are some key talking points to remember as you urge your lawmaker (and friends) to support HB 513:

HB 513 will not give any additional rights, nor expand any existing rights that parents have. It only provides better protection for the rights parents already have.

HB 513 will not allow parents to abuse their kids. It will not take authority away from the state to protect children from abuse or neglect. Because HB 513 reflects what is already the legal standard, it will have no impact on these other laws.

HB 513 will not remove the “best interest of the child” standard. Currently, that standard comes into play when a parent has been deemed unfit or when the family is broken and it falls to the judge to determine child custody. And the same standard will still come into play in all of those same situations even after HB 513 is passed.

HB 513 will not change the definition of “parent” or change who does or does not have parental rights.

It also will not upset current custody or adoption orders. Even when parental rights are fundamental, courts still have the power to enter custody orders when custody of a child is in dispute. And courts still have power to terminate the rights of parents (like for adoption). HB 513 does not change that.

HB 513 also will not let parents dictate curriculum in public schools. Even fundamental parental rights have been found insufficient to “entitle individual parents to enjoin school boards from providing information the boards determine to be appropriate” for students. Fields v. Palmdale School District, 2005

Thank you for standing with us in support of parental rights in Missouri!


Michael Ramey
Director of Communications & Research

Scott Woodruff, of HSLDA, gives this definition of “Fundamental Rights” as they relate to Parental Rights:

There are three types of rights: ordinary, fundamental, and absolute. If a right is “absolute,” the government can do absolutely nothing to restrict it—like the right to choose a faith. The rights of parents have never been considered absolute. The battle today is over whether your rights as a parent are “ordinary” or “fundamental.”

Listen to this interview with William Estrada, of, and his explanation of the fine points of the bill and how it solidifies your parental rights.

Additionally, check the sidebar on the home page for a complete listing of email address, of the Missouri House and Senate, for you to copy and paste in your address fields so you can send blanket emails to the legislature in support of parental rights.


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