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    ONTARIO CATHOLIC PARENT ADVOCATES
   

Catholic Schools Are Being Bullied to Accept GSAs  
            The OCPA stated to the National Post that Bill 13 should be withdrawn because it would affect the way Catholic schools are asked to teach about sexuality and how their social clubs would operate.  Premier McGuinty is on record as saying to supporters in Windsor that he was committed to seeing gay-straight alliances in Catholic schools.  The bishops have opposed gay-straight alliances because the clubs work to achieve recognition of a fluid view of gender identity that the Church does not support.  A number of Christian groups have stated concerns that private schools using Board spaces will also have to comply with the regulations on curriculum and GSAs.  
         The accusation is sometimes made that Catholic schools are intolerant of homosexuals because they teach that homosexual activity is wrong.  This is wrong.  Here's why.  Scott Stinson recently proposed that the entire Catholic school system is intolerant because it adheres to principles of sexual morality.    
 
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Evangelicals Say Bill 13 on Unstable Legal Ground
       The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada released an Open Letter to Members of Parliament on January 24, 2012 that states that bill 13 "problematic from a legal perspective as well as unnecessarily broad, rigid and inflexible. Unless the bill is amended, we predict that the province will have years of expensive, tax-payer funded litigation ahead of it.”  Read the press statement and the open letter.

Catholic Trustees Release Document on Clubs

         (January 30, 2012)  The Ontario Catholic School Trustees' Association (OCSTA) released a document on high school anti-bullying clubs for Ontario Catholic Boards January 25, 2012.  Ontario Catholic Parent Advocates director, Teresa Pierre, says Catholic parents across Ontario applaud the bishops and Trustees for preventing any official school club from being called a "Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA)."  Parents are concerned these GSAs are ways to advocate for a homosexual lifestyle and consequently provide the wrong model for assisting young people with understanding same-sex attraction.               
        Pierre said that the document describes a Catholic anti-bullying strategy that respects the privacy of students, the guiding role of faith, and the role of adult leaders in student discussions of bullying.  "I think it sends the message that  generating empathy among students is the keystone of the Catholic anti-bullying strategy.  At the same time parents have received assurance that the clubs will not be sources of any activism that is at odds with their faith."
 
The document was criticized in the Toronto Star and Globe and Mail.  The document is available here.

OCPA Dicusses Respecting Differences Clubs on Michael Coren
Broten Denounces Respecting Differences Clubs as Too Inclusive
Brian Lilley Talks to Warren Kinsella about McGuinty/Church Conflict
Postmedia Story on McGuinty/Church Conflict


Ontario Anti-Bullying Bills

           Two bills have been proposed to the provincial parliament to combat bullying in schools, Bills 13 and 14. The Liberal Bill, Bill 13 would require school boards to support students who want to lead activities that promote gender equity, anti-racism, understanding and respect for people with disabilities, including groups with the name gay-straight alliance (GSA) or another name.                    Read more

Track the progress of bills 13 and 14 here
Bulllying statistics  Read more 

Bill 13 Excludes Religious Students
 

         (January 24, 2012) The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada has published an open letter against Bill 13.  It comments that "Many families feel as though the interests of some groups are being privileged at the expense of others. Families of public, private and religious school students feel as though the proposed policies are being legislated and implemented in a public relations campaign that leaves no room for their input or consideration for their constitutional rights to individual and corporate religious belief."  Read the letter here.

MPP Rod Jackson Says Anti-Bullying Bill Should Target All Groups

         (January 19, 2012)  Barrie MPP Rod Jackson said he appreciates the intent behind anti-bullying bill 13, but wonders if the target is too specific.

        "There's always going to be bullying in schools - both my kids are 'gingers' - they get picked on," Jackson said of his two red-headed children. "But when they focus on specific groups, does that preclude other kids being covered by that legislation?"

        Jackson also said he has received many emails from people who are concerned about the effect of the bill on the sexual education curriculum.

       "There's a lot of opposition to that part of the bill," he said, adding that, sex education should be talked about in schools, but should be a stand-alone issue and not attached to the the Accepting Schools bill.    Read more            

                   
MP Randy Hillier Speaks Out Against Bill 13
            (Toronto, January 4, 2012)  MP Randy Hillier wrote in the Ottawa Citizen today that Bill 13 is nothing more than a feel-good measure.  He says that "Bill 13 is little more than a poorly disguised pacifier intended to create a perception that not only is the government acting, but is also compassionate and sympathetic toward children who are bullied."  More disturbingly, he continued,  "this policy will have dire consequences for those it is intended to benefit."
Read more
    


Tell Ontario MPPs You Oppose Bill 13

Sign the Petition

TO:  THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY OF ONTARIO
Whereas, as an anti-bullying measure Bill 13 is unnecessary because Ontarians already have Bill 157; and whereas Bill 13 promotes radical revisions to school instruction on sex and gender that a majority of parents do not support; and whereas legislation is not the way to implement equity education (this should rather be addressed by teacher training, after wider parental consultation, in a way which respects the views of people of faith), we the undersigned petition the Assembly to vote against Bill 13.
Sign the OCPA petition against Bill 13  here

Send a letter opposing this bill to Hon. Dalton McGuinty and all MPPs in two easy clicks!  Don't forget to include your full name and an address (at least your town) so that your MPP knows you reside in the riding.

Email MPPs with last names A-L 

Email MPPS with last names M-Z


The most effective strategy of all is to call your own MPP..

Find contact information for your MPP here



Poll Shows Parents Want Say in Sex Ed
         (Toronto, December 27, 2011)  A new Abacus poll shows parents are likely to disapprove of the goals of proposed Bill 13, the Liberal anti-bullying bill, in that it reaches far beyond the practical dimensions of bullying and attempts to control the teaching of gender issues in schools.  Under cover of trying to eliminate bullying, the bill will force social acceptance of the controversial notion that gender is merely a social construct and not tied to biology and nature. 
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Delaying Early Labelling as Gay Decreases Self-Harm
           Psychiatric studies by Ramafedi et al support the view that delaying early labeling as gay or lesbian in adolescents decreases self-harm.   A 1991 study by Ramafedi et al printed in the journal Pediatrics draws three conclusions from their data:  
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                                                                  In the News
 Bullying/Bill 13:


 TCDSB Meeting December 15:  No Committees Report  

       The Board met in public session from 7 to 10: 30 pm and then went into private session.  In private session Trustees discussed item 13a, Governance Report. Private session ended a few minutes before 11pm, the official end of the meeting.  When Trustees completed their meeting at 11 pm, item 12 d, e (the much anticipated Board report on committees), and items 13-16 had not been discussed.  A large amount of Board business had to be deferred until the next meeting, including, of special interest to the OCPA, the Board's report on committees, the report on Student Achievement in Catholic Education, and the reports on religious accommodation and speakers' policy from item 16.  One hopes that the Board plans to address ways to streamline the procedural routine.                                                                                                     Read more
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OCPA informs and activates Catholic ratepayers in Ontario on issues of accountability,
                   transparency and fidelity to the Catholic faith.                        
Contact: ocpa121@gmail.com

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