Voters get final word on a controversial sex education law

ARLINGTON — Courtney Normand and Mindie Wirth agree there’s value in teaching sex education in Washington’s public schools.

But the two Snohomish County mothers disagree sharply on a new state law mandating comprehensive sex education in every district’s curriculum in every grade, starting in kindergarten.

It’s propelled them into the spotlight of the impassioned battle over Referendum 90, a statewide ballot measure which gives voters the final say on keeping or repealing the controversial law.

Normand, of Arlington, backs the law, believing it will provide children building blocks for self-awareness by ensuring they receive accurate and age-appropriate information about their bodies, about consent and about relationships.

“We know that this legislation will give our young people the tools they need for a healthy and more equitable future,” said Normand, a mother of two elementary students who is the state director for Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest. She is a spokeswoman for

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Controversial bill mandating sex education in Washington schools goes to voters in November

Referendum 90 would mandate “age-appropriate” sexual health education to be taught to students in every grade in Washington’s public schools.

SEATTLE — Ballots will soon arrive in mailboxes around Washington state and one controversial issue voters will decide on is Referendum 90, which involves the future of sex education in schools. 

In June, it was a coalition of parents who took back control over the future of sex education in schools, gathering enough signatures to put the decision in the voter’s hands. 

“It was a state record during a global pandemic,” Whitney Holz with Informed Parents of Washington explained.

Initially, the legislature passed guidelines that Gov. Jay Inslee signed in March, mandating every public school in the state to provide “age-appropriate” comprehensive sexual health education for every grade by the 2022-23 school year.

Supporters say in the younger grades it can help kids understand how to build healthy relationships and

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Beaumont and Advocate Aurora Health call off controversial merger talks | Local News

Beaumont Health and Advocate Aurora Health, based in Chicago, have called off merger talks after criticism from Beaumont doctors, donors, and Royal Oak’s federal and state lawmakers, among others.

The announcement Friday came just days after Royal Oak’s State Rep. Jim Ellison, State Sen. Mallory McMorrow and Congressman Andy Levin sounded a warning about the proposed merger in a joint statement.

“We continue to have a very high regard for Advocate Aurora Health,” said John Fox, president and CEO of Beaumont Health in a statement Friday. “But, at this time, we want to focus on our local market priorities and the physicians, nurses and staff who provide compassionate, extraordinary care every day.”

Beaumont and Advocate Aurora Health mutually agreed to end merger discussions five months after signing a non-binding letter of intent, according to Beaumont’s news release.

Jim Skogsbergh, president and CEO of Advocate Aurora Health, in a statement said

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Fact-checking Trump health aide’s unproven ‘hit squads’ claim from controversial Facebook video

The top communications official at the Department of Health and Human Services ran through a series of baseless conspiracy theories in a Facebook Live video, accusing government health officials of “sedition” and warning of a post-election insurrection by left-wing “hit squads.”

The broadcast from Michael Caputo, who President Donald Trump appointed in April as the department’s assistant secretary of public affairs, was first reported by the New York Times. 

Caputo, a former Trump campaign official, warned without evidence that “there are hit squads being trained all over this country” to violently oppose a second Trump term, according to the New York Times. He predicted that Trump would win a contested election, sparking chaos.

“And when Donald Trump refuses to stand down at the inauguration, the shooting will begin,” he said, according to the report. “The drills that you’ve seen are nothing.”

Caputo told gun owners to “buy ammunition, ladies and

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