California is doing away with “harmful and outdated” stereotypes, such as assuming that girls like some kinds of toys while boys tend to prefer others.
It’s one of several new laws in California that take effect on Jan. 1 (although retailers have until 2024 to comply with the toy aisle edict), that specifically deal with human gender. Others make it easier for same-sex parents to complete stepparent adoptions, and require the state’s community colleges and public universities to use transgender and “nonbinary” students’ preferred names even if they have not legally changed those names.
Assembly Bill 1084, authored by gay member Evan Low (D), forces retailers with 500 or more workers to remove “boys” and “girls” signs in toy and child care sections, or to create a gender-neutral retail section for such merchandise, reports the Bay Area Reporter, a gay news site.
Low and co-author Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D) had to abandon their dream of genderless children’s clothing sections in order to get the bill passed, and will have to rely on toys to get children suitably confused about what sex they are.
After Jan. 1, 2024, any retail department store not in compliance with AB 1084 will be liable for civil penalties not to exceed $250 for a first violation and $500 for subsequent infractions.
“My hope is this bill encourages more businesses across California and the U.S. to avoid reinforcing harmful and outdated stereotypes,” Low stated after Gov. Gavin Newsom signed it into law.