(For those outside Alberta, please don’t ignore this action update. Manitoba is working on similar guidelines, and other provinces are likely to follow.)
In less than one year, Alberta has transitioned from a province with an outstanding reputation for upholding parental authority in education to becoming one of the most oppressive jurisdictions in North America. Christian schools are now being told to adopt policies and procedures by March 31st which directly violate their faith and promote radical ideologies. If the province does not change its approach, Christian parents and schools will have to either compromise their faith or make a principled stand against the province.
Basic Talking Points
The following four points encapsulate our basic concerns about the Alberta education minister’s desire to make all schools celebrate his radical gender politics and his unchristian views of sexuality.
ludicrous overreach: the new policies and guidelines from the education minister are so beyond the pale that even public schools are pushing back. See below for many examples of the extreme nature of these guidelines.
parental rights undermined: the new policies and guidelines drive a wedge between parents and children and actively seek to undermine this very important relationship.
palpable harm to children: the evidence from medical experts is clear – encouraging or reinforcing gender dysphoria, particularly with pre-pubescent children, is harmful to the child and virtually guarantees a life of emotional and psychological suffering. The exact students the State pretends to help are the ones most harmed by these policies. These policies also gamble with child abuse by downplaying any risks associated with mixing boys and girls in the same change rooms, washrooms and sports teams.
religious and associational liberty attacked: the new policies and guidelines violate the Charter’s guarantee of freedom of religion (including the right of religious institutions to remain true to their faith commitments without having to teach or celebrate as true and good something fundamentally at odds with their religious convictions). The policies and guidelines also violate the Charter’s guarantee of freedom of association (including the right of parents to come together for a legitimate common cause and to carry out that cause according to their shared principles without State interference).
We urge our readers and supporters in Alberta to communicate these points to their elected representatives boldly, but also respectfully. Also, though many of you are parents who send your children to an independent school, speak as a concerned citizen and as parent but not on behalf of your school (leave that to your local school board).
In order to get the full story of what is going on, what is at stake, and what you can do, please read on.
Alberta’s Bill 7 was introduced on November 19th by Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley. The bill seeks to amend the Alberta Human Rights Act by striking out the word ‘gender’ – which previously only distinguished between males and females – and replace it with the words ‘gender’, ‘gender identity’, and ‘gender expression’. Though a seemingly simple alteration, it has a large impact. It has already passed first reading in the Alberta Legislature, with very little public awareness or discussion. We need your help to alert our MLAs and the broader public to the danger of redefining sex in Albertan law. What’s the issue? Some individuals believe they were born into a biological sex that they do not feel fits their psychological sexual identity. This is known commonly as transsexualism, transgenderism, Gender Identity Disorder (GID), or gender dysphoria. Provincial governments have begun enshrining in law an idea that this psychological sexual identity – for which the term ‘gender’ is used – is not fixed but fluid. Tied into that is the idea that there are more than two genders, and that what ultimately matters is how one person feels about their own gender, rather than giving any consideration to what their biological sex is. Those pushing this political agenda are attempting to enshrine in law the right to identify as, act, and dress as any sex they feel best relates to their psychological sexual self-identity – and to be treated by the civil government and the rest of society accordingly.