Protests and counter-protests for and against Canada’s trans and LGBTQ community are planned for Wednesday across Canada.
Posters created by a group called “1MillionMarch4Children” say rally participants “unite against gender ideology in schools,” referring to s****l orientation and gender identity curricula taught in schools. British Columbia public schools.
Sarah Worthman, an LGBTQ activist who has helped organize at least 63 counter-protests across the country, said Canadians must stand up for the community outside of Pride events.
“Allyship is a verb,” she said, calling on her supporters to stand in solidarity with LGBTQ people who are increasingly the subject of hate and political debate by participating in No Space for Hate events.
“There is this small but vocal minority of far-right individuals who constantly think that they are the majority and that everyone shares their point of view,” Worthman said.
She said she hoped the planned counter-protests could help show that most Canadians are generally supportive, while countering the hateful messages they expect from protesters.
“Doing these little things shows that there is a social pushback,” she said. “There is real danger in all of this.”
British Columbia Human Rights Commissioner Kasari Govender called anti-LGBTQ marches “fueled by hate” and said that while peaceful protests protect democracy and generate debate, human rights of the trans and LGBTQ community “are not subject to debate”.
She said in a statement Tuesday that a survey by her office showed that nearly two-thirds of LGBTQ students feel unsafe at school, compared to 11 percent of straight students, and that attempts to removing from school curricula is hateful.
Worthman said politicians, too, “should be more vocal” about their support for the LGBTQ community and against individuals who seek to further marginalize its members.
Clint Johnston, president of the BC Teachers’ Federation, wrote a letter to British Columbia Premier David Eby about the union’s concerns about the planned protests.
He said they were part of a coordinated attack on the trans and LGBTQ community.
“These rallies are part of a movement across North America that is using “parental consent” as a wake-up call to denounce the rise of homophobia and transphobia. This movement is concerning and must be stopped,” he said in the letter.
In response, the Prime Minister said school must be a place where every student feels safe and it is upsetting to see misinformation and misinformation being used to attack vulnerable children and young people.
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“Without hesitation, I denounce the threats, hatred and violence against 2SLGBTQIA+ communities. We are seeing a worrying increase in incidents in which trans people are the targets of threats and violence in person and online,” Eby said in the statement.
“We cannot and must not stand idly by in the face of any form of intimidation. Any political leader who targets our most vulnerable and at-risk children and youth is not a leader at all.
A statement from the City of Whitehorse says it is aware of a march planned for September 20 in the City of Yukon and that anti-LGBTQ messages targeting members of the community will not be tolerated.
Bylaw officers in Whitehorse are also aware of the planned counter-protest march and the city said the RCMP will monitor it.
Govender said in a statement that those who want to “protect” children by removing academic supports for gay, bis****l, trans and other students are misinformed.
“As a parent, I implore those who think they are protecting their children: erasing LGBTQ2SAI+ people from our curriculum will not change your child’s identity, but it will make schools and the LGBTQ2SAI+ people in them less safe,” she said. she declared. .
Trans people have become the subject of a “wave of misinformation, conspiracy theories and hatred,” Govender said.
“It’s not just about hatred based on gender identity; these gatherings are an affront to human dignity, expression and the rights of all of us,” she said.
A letter from Govender to Eby urged him to release details about the effectiveness of 12 recommendations Govender’s office submitted to the province in March.
The recommendations stem from a public inquiry that examined reports of hate in British Columbia and provides a “road map for how to take concrete, transformative action against hate,” Govender said.
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