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MT governor signs bill safeguarding parental rights

Friday, May 19, 2023

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Matt Sharp, director of the ADF Center for Legislative Advocacy, regarding Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte’s signing Thursday of HB 676, a bill that strengthens the freedom of parents to direct the upbringing, care, and education of their children:

“Parents have the right to raise and educate their children, consistent with their beliefs and values, without fear of being unjustly punished by the government. It’s in kids’ best interests for parents to be involved any time a child faces serious issues at school, whether academic, social, or mental or emotional health. Yet, we continue to see instances nationwide of government officials actively seeking to replace parents as the ultimate determiners of what’s best for children. This critical legislation creates guardrails to prevent the government from interfering with parents’ fundamental right to direct the education, health care, and upbringing of their children. We’re grateful to Gov. Gianforte, Rep. Kerri Seekins-Crowe, and the Montana Legislature for enacting this legislation and safeguarding parental rights in Montana.”

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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ABOUT Matt Sharp

Matt Sharp serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he is the director of the Center for Public Policy. In this role, he leads ADF's team of policy experts as they craft legislation and advise government officials on policies that promote free speech, religious freedom, parental rights, and the sanctity of human life. Since joining ADF in 2010, Sharp has authored federal and state legislation, regularly provides testimony and legal analysis on how proposed legislation will impact constitutional freedoms, and advises governors, legislators, and state and national policy organizations on the importance of laws and policies that protect First Amendment rights. He has twice testified before the U.S. Congress on the importance of protecting free speech and religious liberty in federal law. Sharp also authored an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of nearly 9,000 students, parents, and community members asking the court to uphold students’ right to privacy against government intrusion. Sharp earned his J.D. in 2006 from the Vanderbilt University School of Law. A member of the bar in Georgia and Tennessee, he is also admitted to practice in several federal courts.