11 Apr 2018 Alberta bill blocking info on student activities from parents will be challenged in court

by Lighthouse News The Alberta government is facing a lawsuit over Bill 24. That’s the law - passed late last year - which expressly forbids school teachers, principals, or other school employees from telling parents about whether their own children join so-called "gay-straight alliance clubs". The government claimed at the time that the prohibition is about “protecting children from abusive parents”. But now, a group of 24 religious schools, eight parents and a pair of non-profit groups have launched a constitutional challenge of the law. The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms announced...

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07 Mar 2018 Children’s Aid Society can’t force Christian foster parents to affirm truth of the Easter bunny, judge rules

In a classic case of truth being stranger than fiction, an Ontario judge has ruled that it’s not okay for a government agency to force foster parents to lie to their foster children, especially if the lie involves a basic betrayal of religious views. The case, Derek and Frances Baars v. Children’s Aid Society of Hamilton, involved a couple who had two young foster children taken away from them in April of 2017 because they refused to tell the children that the Easter Bunny was real. In a 62-page ruling handed down...

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10 Jan 2018 Child Services Loves Santa Claus: A Canadian Cultural Experience

by Colin Postma Magic was in the air last month – sleigh bells ringing, fires crackling, snow glistening and all that – if you believe the songs on mind-numbing repeat in every store. It’s the Canadian experience of Christmas: dragging yourself through shopping lists, falling asleep at the wheel while waiting for the traffic jams to clear out, and being jolted awake with the horrid realization you forgot to get anything good for Aunt Gertrude. Amidst all the wonder and merriment of this ‘essential Canadian cultural experience’, a case proceeded in a Hamilton...

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19 Dec 2017 LN Feature: 2017: A Year in Review

André Schutten, Director of Law and Policy - ARPA Canada LN: Mark, let's start with you. Let's start with a broad overview of some of the organizational highlights we've seen in the past year. Give me some of those highlights. MP: Yeah. I could touch on our first-ever God and Government Youth Conference, the big legal win we had against the Province of Ontario in the FIPPA case; maybe the Bibles that went to every federal and provincial (elected) government official in our land. Those were big developments, and there was many...

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12 Dec 2017 Day care availability

Andrea Mrozek, Program Director - Cardus Family Cardus Families is out with a new report on day care vacancy rates in British Columbia. There’s a narrative in BC that says there's a “crisis in day care” because of a lack of available spaces, but Cardus Families Director Andrea Mrozek says statistics from the government don't actually bear that out. “The data shows that there are vacancies, and that those vacancy (rates) can get up to 50% depending on where you are in the province.” During the provincial election campaign in BC earlier...

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28 Nov 2017 Ontario’s highest court: public education is not neutral

By John Sikkema In an important ruling, a Christian father lost his religious freedom claim against the Hamilton School Board. But it’s not all bad news. The main reason for E.T.’s loss (the father’s name is redacted to his initials) was the breadth of his claim and lack of evidence to support it. He lost on the facts, not the law. E.T. wanted school staff to give him notice whenever “moral relativism”, “environmental worship”, “occultic principles”, “sex education”, or “portrayals of homosexual/bisexual conduct and relationships and/or transgenderism as natural, healthy or acceptable”...

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28 Nov 2017 Parental Rights affirmed in Ontario

Derek Ross, Executive Director of Christian Legal Fellowship The Ontario Court of Appeal has released a decision in a case with major implications for parental rights in education. A father in Hamilton - referred to in court document only as "E-T" - had asked the Hamilton Public School Board for advance notification when certain subjects were to be taught at his children’s public school so that he could remove those kids from classes if the content conflicted with the family’s sincerely held religious beliefs. A lower court had turned down the request, and...

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28 Nov 2017 Parental Rights affirmed at the United Nations

A surprise vote last week at the United Nations Committee on Social, Humanitarian and Cultural issues. There are 174 countries represented on that committee, and grouping of countries primarily from Africa blocked a resolution affirming the rights of children to self-determination when it came to sexual and reproductive health issues, and also inserted language that insisted on the primacy of parental rights when it came to issues of sex education. Several member states reaffirmed their belief that parents must play a central role in education, with Singapore’s delegate stressing that...

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22 Nov 2017 Protect them All: a Christian case for eliminating lists of special identity groups in school policies

Schools, whether private or public, should adopt a zero-tolerance approach to bullying and harassment. Such policies are aimed at protecting each and every student in the school. Provincial education ministries often recommend – or in some cases require – long lists of identifying characteristics to be included in these policies such as race, citizenship, disability, creed, sex, and even the modern concepts of sexual orientation and gender identity. Christian schools, however, should not include these lists in their policies. While we agree that schools need to protect all students (including those who...

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14 Nov 2017 Christians being denied for adoptions?

Lawyer John Carpay for the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms Director, Mike Schouten The Alberta government is being taken to court over a decision by the provincial Ministry of Children's Services to deny a Christian couple's application to adopt a child. The case is being launched by the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms in Calgary. The Centre's John Carpay says initially, the home study had approved the couple’s application to adopt an older child. However, he says, the government didn’t like couple’s response to the question of how they would respond...

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