Minnesota Mom Has Day in Court for Usurpation of Parental Rights

Erick Kaardal, Thomas More Society Special Counsel

On January 26, 2017, Thomas More Society attorney argued before the United States District Court, District of Minnesota, on behalf of a mother whose minor son was given transgender services without her knowledge or consent.

Special Counsel Erick Kaardal presented the arguments in Anmarie Calgaro’s lawsuit against St. Louis County and other agencies for usurping her parental rights over her minor son, providing him with transgender services and narcotic drugs. The youth was handled by the defendants as an emancipated minor despite no court action to that effect. According to her suit, Minnesota law provides Calgaro no recourse to challenge the emancipation status, which is a violation of her rights as guaranteed under the United States Constitution.

Kaardal argued that the school district, county, and medical agencies in Minnesota did not provide notice or hearing to Calgaro prior to terminating her parental rights over her minor child. He noted that this would have been required in marital dissolution, paternity, or child protection situations, and asked, “Why is it not required in emancipation?” Kaardal charged these service providers with stepping into a governmental role but not providing parental due process, thereby creating a constitutional concern.

Calgaro’s lawsuit charges St. Louis County, St. Louis County Public Health and Human Services Director, Fairview Health Services, Park Nicollet Health Services, St. Louis County School District, Principal of the Cherry School, and her minor son with repeated circumvention of her parental rights.

In June 2015, the boy was advised that he was emancipated, despite no court order or legal action to terminate his mother’s parental rights. He was then provided with medical treatment for a sex change from male to female and also prescribed narcotics. The school district has classified the boy as an adult with exclusive rights to information and decision-making and denied Calgaro access to his educational records or any legal authority to affect his educational decision-making.

Kaardal commented, “Ms. Calgaro is living a parent’s worst nightmare. Her son has, while a minor, been steered through a life-changing, permanent body-altering process by organizations that have no reason to have his best interests in mind.” He explained, “With no parental involvement, this child has become a pawn in someone else’s agenda, influenced by those who have no right to make decisions over his life and well-being. These institutions have no right, legally or morally, to usurp the place of a parent.”

Backgrround information on this case can be found here: Minnesota Mom Sues for Usurpation of Parental Rights