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Table of Contents for this Page:

The CLF to Make Oral Submissions Before the Supreme Court of Canada in Parental Rights and Religious Freedom Case

The EFC to Appear Before the Supreme Court of Canada on Parental Rights/Religious Freedom Case

New Campaign Challenges the Assault on Freedom by Canada’s Human Rights Commissions and Tribunals

Top court agrees to study up on Quebec schools' religion course

Liberty Counsel Files Brief On Behalf of Santa Rosa County Teachers and Staff [in Florida]

Quebec Jesuit school wins right to teach ethics from religious perspective

Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission Seeks Supreme Court Case against Catholic Activist

Homosexual Activist Appeals Exoneration of Canadian Pastor Boissoin

Free Speech Victory in Whalcott v. Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal

Religious charities in limbo, court told

Free Speech Clause in U.K. Gay Hate Crimes Bill Defeated in House of Commons

BCCLA demands equal treatment for U Vic pro-life club

Anti-gay letter is free speech, lawyer argues

Homosexual Adult Altar-Server Files Human Rights Complaint against Bishop for Dismissal

Victory! Alberta Enshrines Parental Rights

British Churches to be Forced to Hire Active Homosexual Youth Workers under Equality Bill

Human Rights Commission 'Dismisses: hate charges against CHP Canada [CHP press release]

 

Dr. Chris Kempling is Leaving the Public School System

An Important Message from Dr. Chris Kempling  June, 2008

Chris Kempling to Quit BC Teachers' College after Years of Harassment for Christian Beliefs 

Human Rights Commission Drops Complaint Against Catholic Magazine

Rights commission ‘remedy’ flawed

"I stand behind my 2002 letter" [letter to Red Deer Advocate]

A Letter from Chris Kempling on the Latest BC College of Teachers Action Against Him  [letter of February 5, 2008]

"What I'm Not Allowed to Say"  [by Dr. Chris Kempling]

 A Summary of Events Related to the Chris Kempling Case

Bishop Henry calls for overhaul of human rights commissions

Canada Catholic League Calls for Halt to Use of Human Rights' Commissions in Free Speech Cases

Precedent-Setting Ruling Reinstates Canadian Pro-Life Activist’s Nursing License, Cancels Fine

Surprise Appointment

Ohio Teacher Doesn't Have to Pay Dues to NEA

Groups' Representatives Draw Up Statement of Principles in Response to the Corren Settlement Agreement in British Columbia

Parents to Rally in Support of Jailed Massachusetts Father    

Chris Kempling Update—September 15, 2005

"Growing Support for Alberta Pastor Facing Human Rights Hearing Over Letters Against Homosexuality"

"Dr. Kempling and the B.C. Court of Appeal"  [April 25. 2005 news release]

Teacher Suspended Three Months for Defending Traditional Marriage

A Visit to New York to Speak at the United Nations

Religious Freedom in Canada

A Message from Chris Kempling--February 4, 2004

A Message from Chris Kempling--December 7, 2003

A Message Dated August 2, 2003 from Chris Kempling Regarding His Hearing in the Supreme Court of British Columbia

Another Teacher Who Was in Trouble with the British Columbia College of Teachers 
for Opposing the Pro-Homosexuality Agenda

A Letter from Chris Kempling to His Supporters (Received June 20, 2003)

British Columbia Parents and Teachers Sends Letter May 3 (2003) Asking for Abolition of the 
British Columbia College of Teachers--and Government Replies to That Letter

British Columbia College of Teachers Sets Penalty for Chris Kempling  (See April 14th 

A Message from Chris Kempling--April 5, 2003

Catholic Civil Rights League Letter to The Province

Vancouver  Province Runs  Kempling Article and Invites Responses on the Issue.

 

For the information of our readers, we post these news releases from the Christian Legal Fellowship and the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada:

For Immediate Release from the CHRISTIAN LEGAL FELLOWSHIP

May 17, 2011

CLF TO MAKE ORAL SUBMISSIONS BEFORE SUPREME COURT OF CANADA IN PARENTAL RIGHTS AND RELIGIOUS FREEDOM CASE

OTTAWA – On May 18, the Christian Legal Fellowship (CLF) will make oral submissions before the Supreme Court of Canada in S.L., et al. v. Commission scolaire des Chênes, et al., a case originating in Quebec, which will decide parental rights with respect to religious instruction.

“This case, at its core, is about freedom of conscience and religion,” says Robert Reynolds, legal counsel for CLF.  “More specifically, it is concerned with the freedom of conscience and religion of parents and protecting the rights of believing parents to pass on their religion to their children without interference from the State.”

The appeal arises from the case out of Drummondville, Quebec where Christian parents sought to have their children exempted from participation in the mandatory Ethics and Religious Culture Curriculum but were refused by their local school board.  The course is mandated from grade 1 to grade 11 for all public and private schools. While the course has as its objective the promotion of tolerance and respect, the curriculum advances certain rights and values at the expense of others including the Appellants.

 

The CLF, which was granted intervenor status in the case, intends to argue that the rights of the Appellants as Christian parents includes the right to teach and disseminate their faith to their children, and to ensure that their children’s religious education is in conformity with their own convictions.

 

“For Christians, the right to teach and disseminate one's faith begins with one's children,” explains Ruth Ross, CLF Executive Director and General Legal Counsel. “Christians must be free to shield and protect their children from competing ideologies and teachings which are at odds with their own religious convictions.”

 

Other applications to intervene in the SCC appeal were granted to groups including the Canadian Catholic School Trustees Association, Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Canadian Council of Christian Charities, Christian Group for Parental Rights in Education, Coalition for Liberty in Education, Evangelical Fellowship of Canada and Association of Quebec School Boards.

 

To access documents submitted by CLF, click here.

- 30 -

Ruth Ross will be available for comment at the Supreme Court of Canada before the hearing and throughout the day. For further information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Helen Stephenson

helen.clf@primus.ca / ross.clf@primus.ca

CHRISTIAN LEGAL FELLOWSHIP

Alliance des chrétiens en droit

Phone: (519) 641-8850 Fax: (519) 641-8866
www.christianlegalfellowship.org

The Christian Legal Fellowship is a national not-for-profit association of legal professionals in Canada. The association, among other functions, explores the complex interrelationships between the practice and theory of law and Christian faith. The Fellowship has some 500 active members from several dozen Christian denominations working together to integrate Christian faith with law.


For immediate release from The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada

May 17, 2011

THE EFC TO APPEAR BEFORE SUPREME COURT OF CANADA ON PARENTAL RIGHTS/RELIGIOUS FREEDOM CASE 

OTTAWA – The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC) will be presenting oral arguments to the Supreme Court of Canada on May 18, 2011. S.L., et al. v. Commission scolaire des Chênes, et al., a case originating in Quebec, will address the issue of whether parents have the right to choose the kind of education their children will receive, particularly in regard to religious and moral instruction.

“This case will cut to the core of what freedom of religion and conscience and parental authority mean in Canada,” states Don Hutchinson, EFC Vice-President and General Legal Counsel. “Parents simply want the right to teach morality and religion from their perspective, or decide who will do so on their behalf. The right to pass on one’s religious and cultural heritage to their children is a fundamental aspect of religious freedom and parental authority in Canada.”

At issue is the Ethics and Religious Culture (ERC) program, a mandatory course which must be taught to all québécois children, from grade 1 to grade 11, whether they attend public or private schools, or are homeschooled.  The course, which states its objective as the instruction of children in a manner that will promote tolerance and respect, thus equipping them to live a pluralist society, has proven to be polarizing and controversial. Its mandate, while at first appearance seeming at home in Canada’s multicultural society, actually sacrifices certain rights and values in order to advance others.

“Parents in the evangelical Christian community are split on the ERC program,” explains Faye Sonier, EFC Legal Counsel. "Some welcome the opportunity for children to learn about the contribution of religious communities to the culture of Quebec. Others are concerned that teaching young children about a variety of religions in the manner required by the course will convey to them that all religious beliefs and all moral codes are relative or of equal merit. However, most agree that parents should have the right to choose whether or not their children participate in the program. Unfortunately, all parents who have requested that their children be exempted from the classroom have been refused.”

 “Parents are asking that their parental authority be affirmed so they can exempt their children from course material that is inconsistent with their sincerely held religious beliefs”, explains Hutchinson. “Provinces across Canada permit classroom exemptions, either in regulation or practice, or other forms of accommodation. Further, the province of Quebec has yet to demonstrate why this course is mandatory to ensure a peaceful and tolerant society. Canada’s longstanding tradition of education from a Judaeo-Christian foundation has bred a vibrant, multicultural nation known for its acceptance of others and tolerance for differing opinions and religious beliefs.”

“To compel tolerance is to dispense with it. Every religion is, in essence, exclusive. Compelling tolerance by state-mandated compulsory religious and moral education can only be accomplished by violating the freedom of religion and conscience of each religiously devout individual,” concludes Sonier.

A related case still in the Quebec court system involves Montreal’s Loyola High School which sought the right to teach the ERC program from a Catholic perspective. The Ministry of Education denied the school permission to do so. Justice Gérard Dugré of the Quebec Superior Court stated that the decision to impose the course on the Catholic school demonstrated “a totalitarian character essentially equivalent to Galileo’s being ordered by the Inquisition to deny Copernican universe.”

For more information about the case or to read the EFC’s written submission please visit www.theEFC.ca/SL.

-30 -

Don Hutchinson will be available for comment immediately after the hearing at the Supreme Court of Canada and throughout the course of the day.

For more information or an interview contact:
Anita Levesque
The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada
(613) 233-9868, ext. 325
MediaRelations@theEFC.ca


We have received the following press release regarding an important new campaign:

For Immediate Release

New Campaign Challenges the Assault on Freedom 
by Canada’s Human Rights Commissions and Tribunals

(Vancouver) November 9, 2010: As Canada prepares to remember those who paid the supreme sacrifice for our freedom, a grassroots campaign has been launched today to protect this freedom from an unlikely source; our country’s human rights commission and tribunals.

“As strange as it might sound, it’s in the very name of human rights that our fundamental freedoms are being challenged” explained Neil Dykstra, the campaign’s spokesperson. “These quasi-judicial bodies have wandered far from their original mandate. They hold up fabricated “rights” and use these to undermine the freedoms that we easily take for granted, including freedom of speech and expression, freedom of religion and conscience, freedom of the press, and freedom of assembly and association.”

The campaign was kicked off with seven events in BC and Ontario in the past few weeks and is now reaching all Canadians through a action-oriented website www.HumanRightsCommissions.ca. The site features brand new technology through which readers can send customized letters straight to their MP about the issue in a matter of seconds. It also provides petitions, sample letters, and talking points for meeting with elected officials. The site even includes a video interview with one MP who sits on the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights, calling on Canadians to contact their MP’s about the commissions.

“We know that there is broad-based support among politicians to reform or even remove these commissions and tribunals” explained Dykstra. “Just last week Saskatchewan announced its plans to reform their human rights code and dissolve their human rights tribunal. BC is also considering disbanding its Tribunal and sending complaints to a dedicated employment tribunal. These are positive developments that must continue across the country. It will take grassroots action to achieve this and our hope is that this campaign will be a catalyst for spurring every-day Canadians to stand up for our fundamental freedoms.”

The commissions and tribunals attracted significant attention in the past few years because of several high-profile complaints, including one against Maclean’s newsmagazine about an article on Islam that was an excerpt from a Mark Steyn book, and another complaint against Ezra Levant and the Western Standard for republishing the infamous Danish cartoons of the prophet Mohammad. Not quite as well known, the commissions and tribunals have been taking on dozens of other complaints in which pastors, business persons, charities, and corporations have been found guilty of offending people and sentenced to forced apologies, re-education, fines, speech bans, and huge legal bills.

Parliament began an investigation into the conduct of the Canadian Human Rights Commission last year. Numerous political leaders and media outlets have come out criticizing the commissions and tribunals but as of yet few reforms or changes have been made. Even a commission-initiated investigation concluded that significant reforms were necessary, only to be ignored by the commission that paid for the review.

Some of the problems highlighted on the campaign website include:

  1. The Tribunals do not have to abide by the long-standing rules of justice that are the norm in our court system. The due process of law is ignored, evidence can be based on hear-say, and hurt feelings are enough to find someone guilty of inciting hatred. Regular legal defences of truth, fair comment, and lack of intent to harm don’t apply in the HRT’s.
  2. With this kind of criteria, it isn’t too much of a surprise that for 32 years the Canadian Human Rights Commission had a 100% conviction rate for all Section 13 cases it brought before the Tribunal. That finally ended when Section 13 was declared unconstitutional by the federal Tribunal in 2009.
  3. The HRC complaint process has itself become a favourite tool of activists to silence and bankrupt their political enemies. If a case is accepted, complainants do not have to pay any costs, even if they lose the case. On the other hand, defendants must cover all of their own legal expenses, even if they win. Simply being brought before a HRC is a significant penalty.
  4. Human Rights Commissions have actively sought complaints of borderline legitimacy in order to increase its workload. CHRC staff have also stated that they post their own online comments on anti-Semitic and racist forums to find and entrap others.
  5. The Commissions actively lobby parliament to create more civil rights that further restrict our fundamental rights. Some have even gone so far as to use their policy-making powers to “read in” new rights into the provincial human rights codes.
  6. The Commissions have more investigative powers than the police. The Commissions have no procedures or safeguards to ensure that their investigations are carried out in a proper and ethical manner.
  7. There is no complaint mechanism by which the Commission and its staff can be held to account. In the face of widespread public criticism, the Canadian HRC hand-picked their own expert and paid him $50,000 to review their practices. This back-fired when the investigator himself concluded that the censorship powers of the CHRC had to be removed. The CHRC has ignored this report and now continues its censorship unabated.

“We urge Canadians to check out the website, use the simple email program on it, and share it with their families, friends, and co-workers” stated Dykstra. “When enough people stand up for freedom it will be a political liability not to act.”

-- 30 –

To arrange an interview please contact Mark Penninga at 1-866-691-2772 or info@humanrightscommissions.ca.

 

 


 

Top court agrees to study up on Quebec schools' religion course

 
 

The Gazette

OTTAWA — In a case that will test the rights of Quebec parents in the education of their children, the Supreme Court of Canada will consider whether students can opt out of the province's mandatory course on ethics and religious culture.

The class, imposed provincewide two years ago by the government of Liberal Premier Jean Charest ononal students in elementary and secondary schools, seeks to promote harmonious social relations in Quebec in response to a heated debate over what qualifies as the "reasonable accommodation" of religious minorities.

A Catholic couple from Drummondville, Que., is challenging the course, saying the province's refusal to exempt their two children violates their freedom as parents as well as their religious beliefs.

The Supreme Court, as usual, did not give reasons for granting leave to appeal.

The parents, identified in court documents as S.L. and D.J., lost their case last year in a Quebec court.

"For us, the whole issue is parental rights versus the rights of the state," said Jean Morse-Chevrier, president of Association of Catholic Parents of Quebec. "Who has the final word on the education of our children?"

The course was introduced in 2009 in Quebec schools, public and private, with the goal to sensitize Quebec schoolchildren by exposing them to the cultural aspects of a variety of religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, Judaism and aboriginal spiritualities.

Public schools in Quebec are non-denominational — so no classes on any one religion are offered, a choice that remains in private school.

In the first year of the course, about 2,000 parents applied for their child to skip the course, but they were rejected by school boards, said Morse-Chevrier. . . . .

[Read more in the Montreal Gazette online site.]

 



  Liberty Counsel Files Brief On Behalf of Santa Rosa County Teachers and Staff [in Florida]

September 21, 2010

www.LC.org

Santa Rosa County, FL – Liberty Counsel filed its Initial Brief at the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta, Georgia, on behalf of the Christian Educators Association International (“CEAI”). CEAI sought to intervene in a federal trial court to defend the rights of the faculty and staff of the Santa Rosa County School District, but the court refused the request and refused to dismiss the case brought by the ACLU, even though the case had become moot following the graduation of the two high school seniors who brought the suit under the pseudonym of “Doe.”

The ACLU-crafted Consent Decree is being used to threaten employees with fines and jail time for praying over a meal. These outrageous actions prompted Liberty Counsel to request to intervene in order to stop this crackdown on constitutional rights. In August of 2009, Liberty Counsel successfully defended Michelle Winkler from contempt charges brought by the ACLU after her husband, who is not employed by the district, offered a meal prayer at a privately sponsored event in a neighboring county. On Constitution Day, Liberty Counsel successfully defended Pace High School Principal Frank Lay and Athletic Director Robert Freeman against criminal contempt charges, after the ACLU complained when Freeman offered a blessing for a lunch meal, served to about 20 adult booster club members.

Under the Consent Decree and the guideline issued by the district, teachers are always considered to be acting in their “official capacity” whenever a student is present, even at private functions off campus. Teachers cannot pray, bow their heads, or fold their hands to show agreement with anyone who does pray. Teachers and staff cannot “Reply” to an email sent by a parent if the parent’s email refers to God or Scripture. Teachers either have to delete such references from the original email or reply by initiating a new email. Teachers and staff are also required to stop students from praying in their own private club meetings. During witness testimony, Winkler cried as she described how she and a coworker, who had recently lost a child, had to hide in a closet to pray. 

The two anonymous plaintiffs who initiated the case graduated in May 2009, and the case brought by the ACLU became moot. But the judge has not dismissed the case. In addition to this appeal regarding intervention and mootness, Liberty Counsel has another suit pending against the district on behalf of faculty, staff, students, and people in the community whose rights are infringed by this Consent Decree.

Mathew Staver, Founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law, commented: “Public schools are not religion-free zones, yet this ACLU-crafted court order criminalizes Christianity and censors religious expression, even outside of school time. We will not rest until this unconstitutional order is overturned.”

 


Quebec Jesuit school wins right to teach ethics from religious perspective

Judge rules Quebec was ‘totalitarian’ in trying to impose secular approach to Roman Catholic ethics instruction; Charest says government will appeal

Ingrid Peritz

Montreal From Tuesday's Globe and Mail

In a decision that sets back Quebec’s efforts to strip religion from the province’s institutions, a judge has ruled that the government showed Inquisition-like intolerance in the way it imposed a secular ethics course on a private Roman Catholic school.

The ironic reference to religious zealotry in the pursuit of secularism came in a ruling that handed a victory to Montreal’s Loyola High School. The Jesuit boy’s school went to court for the right to keep teaching its ethics course from a Roman Catholic perspective.

In a decision handed down Friday, Superior Court Judge Gérard Dugré said that not only did Quebec violate Loyola’s religious freedoms by insisting it teach the secular course, but also it went about it in a “totalitarian” manner. . . .

[Read the whole Globe and Mail article online.]

 


 

Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission Seeks Supreme Court Case 
against Catholic Activist


By Patrick B. Craine

REGINA, Saskatchewan, April 1, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission (SHRC) has announced their intention to take their case against Bill Whatcott, a Christian fighting the encroachment of homosexualism, to the Supreme Court of Canada.

Whatcott told LifeSiteNews (LSN) Thursday that the SHRC has informed his lawyer, Tom Schuck, of their intention to appeal the February 25th decision of the Saskatchewan Court of Appeals.

Whatcott suggested that, while he does not want to take the case “for granted,” the SHRC's appeal is a poor strategic move in light of the current negative feelings over Canada's human rights commissions.  “Strategically, though I don't want to discourage them from doing it, ... it's a sign of desperation and poor judgment,” he told LSN.  “Politically and legally, ... human rights commissions and their powers to censor opinion are not really politically all that popular right now.”

“If I was them what I would have done was just keep my mouth shut and wait about 10 years and try to build the momentum to censor people like myself when there wasn't so much scrutiny on these bodies,” he added.

The SHRC brought Whatcott before the Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal in 2006 over his practice of distributing flyers about the dangers of abortion and homosexuality.  They launched their case following several complaints over a series of flyers that he had delivered in Saskatoon and Regina in 2001 and 2002.

The flyer at issue was penned in objection to a classified ad in a homosexual newspaper that sought “boys/men for pen pals, friendship, exchanging video, pics.”  It also criticized the promotion of homosexuality in Saskatoon public schools and the University of Saskatchewan.

The Tribunal found that Whatcott had violated section 14(1)(b) of the province's human rights code, which prohibits speech that “exposes or tends to expose to hatred, ridicules, belittles or otherwise affronts the dignity of any person or class of persons on the basis of a prohibited ground.”  He was ordered to pay a $17,500 fine and to cease publicly spreading his beliefs about homosexuality.

The Tribunal decision was upheld in 2007 by the Saskatchewan Court of Queen's Bench, but it was overturned February 25th by the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal.

Justice Darla Hunter ruled that Whatcott had not violated the human rights code, and that the Tribunal decision unjustly limited the freedom of expression.  "It is acceptable, in a democracy, for individuals to comment on the morality of another's behaviour,” she wrote.  “Anything that limits debate on the morality of behaviour is an intrusion on the right to freedom of expression."

In his interview Thursday with LSN, Whatcott insisted that he is not letting the case prevent him from speaking out, noting that he has a mission to Quebec planned for June to preach the Gospel in light of the Quebec government's recently-announced effort to normalize homosexuality.

“I'm not going away regardless of what the outcome of this case is,” he said.


See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

Sask. Court Overturns Human Rights Ruling against Anti-Homosexuality Activist
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2010/mar/10030105.html

Catholic Activist "Banned for life" From Publicly Criticising Homosexuality
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007/dec/07121306.html

 


 

Homosexual Activist Appeals Exoneration of Canadian Pastor Boissoin

By Patrick B. Craine

CALGARY, Alberta, March 30, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The homosexual activist who has pursued Alberta Pastor Stephen Boissoin on a complaint of discrimination since 2002 has re-launched his campaign after a December court defeat, taking his case to the Alberta Court of Appeal.

Dr. Darren Lund is appealing the December 4th  Court of Queen's Bench decision by Justice Earl C. Wilson, who overturned a 2008 ruling against Boissoin by the Alberta Human Rights Commission (AHRC). 

The AHRC was dealing with a complaint from Lund over a June 17, 2002 letter to the editor from Boissoin regarding the promotion of homosexuality in the school system.  The AHRC ruled that the letter could expose homosexuals to hatred or contempt and ordered Boissoin to cease expressing his views on homosexuality publicly, to pay $7,000 in damages to Lund, and to publish a personal apology in the local paper.

According to Justice Wilson, however, Boissoin's letter “does not go so far as to fall within the prohibited status of 'hate' or 'contempt.'”

"Inferring some sort of call for discriminatory practices prohibited by provincial law is an unreasonable interpretation of the letter's message,” he added.

“The problem lies with the laws of our land,” Boissoin wrote Tuesday in an e-mail to LifeSiteNews.  “According to our laws (across Canada) anyone can file an accusation of hate or prejudice to a Human Rights Commission and as Ezra Levant has so correctly pointed out. ... the process then becomes the punishment regardless of the ruling.  Years and years of fighting a malicious accusation.”

He noted that Lund's case against him will likely end up taking 10-15 years and cost him hundreds of thousands of dollars.  “Of course every penny is worth it but this fight should not have to take place,” he said.  “My prayer and hope is that the Appeals Court smacks this down and stands behind Justice Wilson's ruling. Please pray to this end too.”

“Regardless, I will, by God's grace, always find the strength to stand,” he added.  “I will oppose to my last breath in word and deed the HRC's, the Lund's of this world and any ruling that attempts to inhibit my freedom of speech and religious conviction.”

 


Tricia Cooper says she removed her two children from the public school system because she could see increasing infringement on her parental rights.

As a family with strong religious beliefs, Cooper wanted to take her daughters out of an environment she feels teaches her something contrary to what she believes.

“My child should not be taught in junior kindergarten that a woman can love a woman or a woman can be a man,” the Hamilton resident told the Mountain News.

“It’s really up to me in my home to provide that kind of information.”

 

Free Speech Victory in Whalcott v. Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal

[February 6th, 2010]

CALGARY: The Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF) today responded to the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal decision in Whatcott v. Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal, a case in which the CCF had intervened in support of free expression.

In a decision released February 25, the 3-member court ruled that William Whatcott did not violate section 14(1)(b) of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code by distributing flyers to oppose the teaching of homosexuality in Saskatoon’s public schools.

The flyers distributed by Mr. Whatcott in Saskatoon and Regina in 2001 and 2002 were polemical and inflammatory, and the court noted in its decision that many people would find his words “crude, offensive, and pejorative.” The contents of the flyers are re-printed in the court’s decision, posted HERE.

The CCF intervened in support of free expression. Its factum is posted HERE . You will note that many of the CCF’s arguments were adopted by the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal, sometimes with an express reference to the CCF (see paragraph 130 of the court’s decision) and sometimes without an express reference.

The Court set aside a Human Rights Tribunal Order that Mr. Whatcott pay $17,500 to four gay complainants who were offended by his flyers. The Saskatchewan Human Rights Code prohibits the publication of any statement which “exposes or tends to expose to hatred, ridicules, belittles or otherwise affronts the dignity of any person or class of persons” on the basis of age, race, religion, sexual orientation, and other grounds.

“This court decision is good news for free speech,” stated lawyer John Carpay, Executive Director of the CCF, which intervened in support of the right of citizens to express their religious and political opinions on matters of public policy.

“Unfortunately, the court did not strike down the restrictions on free speech. But nothing prevents our federal and provincial politicians from repealing these laws,” continued Carpay.

 

 

Religious charities in limbo, court told

Rights tribunal ruling could force groups 'out of business'

Charles Lewis, National Post  Published: Wednesday, December 16, 2009

 

 

Free Speech Clause in U.K. Gay Hate Crimes Bill Defeated in 
House of Commons

By Hilary White

WESTMINSTER, November 11, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - MPs have voted down a proposal that would have ensured that Christians in the UK retained the freedom to criticise homosexual activity in the country under a proposed hate crimes bill. A free speech amendment in the proposed hate crimes legislation was rejected 342 votes to 145 by MPs on Monday night.

The defeated amendment, proposed by Lord David Waddington, reads, "For the avoidance of doubt, the discussion or criticism of sexual conduct or practices or the urging of persons to refrain from or modify such conduct or practices shall not be taken of itself to be threatening or intended to stir up hatred."

In the proposed bill the offense of "stirring up hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation" carries a sentence of up to seven years' imprisonment. Government ministers contend that the clause is unnecessary.

The clause has been batted back and forth between the House of Lords, who reinserted it last July, and the Commons, which has repeatedly rejected it. The bill is to return to the House of Lords November 11th and 12th for debate. 

Tory MP Dominic Grieve, Shadow Secretary of State for Justice, said on the night of the vote that without the amendment, the bill could have a "chilling effect on freedom of speech" and that there is "plenty of evidence" that existing similar "public order" ordinances already have this effect.

Such laws, he said, are "based upon a form of political correctness" that are "leading to abuse in a number of circumstances by the police who threaten individuals with prosecution unless they desist from expressing perfectly legitimate views."

Grieve said, "I would be more reassured if the Government were taking the public order legislation problems that have arisen more seriously." The problem is continuing, he said, and for that reason, "we should be very wary of legislation that fetters freedom of speech."

Lord Waddington, the author and sponsor of the amendment, told the House of Lords on Monday, "We are not talking about the terrible threat that is faced by many gays, because that threat can be dealt with - and often is dealt with - under the present law."

He said it is simply "not the case" that the "free speech clause opens the gates to incitement to violence against gays." He pointed to the same incidents referred to by Mr. Grieve in which citizens expressing religious or other opinions opposing homosexual activity have been "interviewed" by police as possible offenders. Such people, he said, "were told by the police that they were very close to the serious offence of homophobia, punishable by seven years' imprisonment."

The most recent case in which a citizen expressing an opinion against homosexual behavior has been interrogated is that of Mrs. Pauline Howe, 67, a Christian who was denounced to police by her local Norwich Council when she wrote complaining of the local "gay pride" events. Mrs. Howe was visited by police who questioned her and said she could be open to a hate crime charge. She is considering legal action, saying the visit frightened and intimidated her, although police said they concluded they had no grounds for a charge under existing statutes.

In October, Lord Dear, a former HM Inspector of Constabulary, said that the amendment was "essential" if police officers are to enforce the Government's 'homophobic hatred' law with "good judgment and a light touch."

"The police need to be free to make a judgment in the moment, not harnessed by a one-size-fits-all policy dictated from above," Lord Dear said.

The bill has been heavily criticized in its long journey through Parliament, even by homosexuals themselves. In 2007, British actor and comedian Christopher Biggins warned that it would quash freedom of speech and result in a backlash against homosexuals. Biggins called it "yet another step in the grim march of authoritarianism now afflicting Britain, with people terrified of speaking their minds for fear of the knock on the door."

 

 

BCCLA demands equal treatment for U Vic pro-life club

[a press release from the website of the B. C. Civil Liberfties Association--October 21, 2009]

The B.C. Civil Liberties Association is taking up the case of Youth Protecting Youth (YPY), a pro-life club at the University of Victoria.  Despite repeated appeals by YPY, the UVic Student Society (UVSS) has consistently denied funding to the group on the grounds that its pro-life advocacy is inconsistent with the pro-choice position of both the Society and the Canadian Federation of Students, and that it amounts to harassment of women by creating an atmosphere of "ambient violence". The BCCLA believes that the actions of the UVSS are an infringement of the Charter freedoms of conscience and expression of the YPY group.

We have always seen academic freedom - freedom from government interference - against the background of the public university as an institution specially devoted to freedom of inquiry and speech,” said BCCLA Director and former President John Dixon. “When the university forgets its core identity by preferring censorship over debate it undermines the legitimacy of its claim to independence, and to that extent, its immunity from Charter scrutiny."

At the October 5th meeting of the UVSS Board, the Society confirmed its stubborn determination to withhold the funding ordinarily disbursed to clubs, citing particular alarm at YPY plans to hold a public debate between distinguished UVic philosopher Eike-Henner Kluge representing the pro-choice side, and Stephanie Gray of the Canadian Centre for Bioethical Reform on the pro-life side.

The BCCLA has written to the UVSS, asking for an opportunity to address its Board, in the hope of achieving a resolution.  The BCCLA has also sent letters to the President of UVic, the Chancellor of UVic, and the Minister of Advanced Education and Labour Market Development, urging them to intervene if the UVSS refuses to relent.


Anti-gay letter is free speech, lawyer argues

CBC online, September 16, 2009 

A Calgary judge heard Wednesday that a letter to the editor that called homosexuals immoral is free speech, not a violation of human rights.

In 2002, Reverend Stephen Boissoin sent a letter to the Red Deer Advocate which claimed that "homosexual rights activists and those who defend them are just as immoral as pedophiles, drug dealers, and pimps who plague our communities."

The letter continued to criticize school programs that promote positive images of the gay community, calling them "wicked."

A high school teacher in Red Deer, Darren Lund, filed a complaint and after several years, the Alberta Human Rights Commission ruled the letter violated the province's human rights code. The Commission ordered Boissoin pay $5,000 and apologize to Lund, now a professor at the University of Calgary.

Boissoin decided to appeal the case. The Alberta government stepped out of bounds with its human rights legislation by slapping restrictions on free speech, said Boissoin's lawyer, Gerry Chipeur.

"Nobody should have the power to use the tools that are available to the state, to use the police powers of the state, to prosecute someone else who they disagree with," said Chipeur.

But Boissoin's letter to the editor was hate speech, not free speech, said Lund. . . . .

[Click here to read the whole of the above CBC article.]

 

Homosexual Adult Altar-Server Files Human Rights Complaint against Bishop for Dismissal


By John-Henry Westen

PETERBOROUGH, ON, July 7, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Jim Corcoran, the owner of one of Canada's largest and most lavish spas, has launched a human rights complaint against the Bishop of Peterborough Ontario for refusing him permission to continue to serve as an altar server. 

Corcoran admits that he is homosexual and lives with another homosexual man, but says that he follows the Church's teaching and lives a chaste lifestyle. According to the Catholic Register, Bishop Nicola De Angelis asked Corcoran to accept his decision that he not serve on the altar based upon the bishops' desire to avoid public scandal.

Corcoran is seeking monetary damages of $25,000 from the bishop and $20,000 each from 12 parishioners who complained to the bishop about Corcoran and his roommate having been invited by the local priest to serve on the altar at Masses.
 
That priest, Fr. Allan Hood, of St. Michael the Archangel Parish, was not available to speak with LifeSiteNews.com.
 
Corcoran spoke with Michael Swan of The Catholic Register but Bishop De Angelis has not commented on the matter publicly. LifeSiteNews.com called the chancery office for more information, but there was no answer.
 
Developing …

 

 

 

From the United Mothers, Fathers and Friends Newsletter for June 8, 2009:
Victory! Alberta Enshrines Parental Rights

History was made in the Alberta Legislature Tuesday, June 2, at 1:20 a.m. as parental rights were enshrined in the Alberta Human Rights Act with the passage of Bill 44 by a vote of 35 - 7.

 

This is the first time that the fundamental rights of parents have been recognized in human rights legislation in our nation.

 

Bill 44 included a proposal that the Government of Alberta enshrine in Alberta Human Rights Legislation the right of parents to be notified when school curriculum or materials include the explicit teaching of religion, human sexuality or sexual orientation, as well as the right of parents to opt their children out of participation in such curriculum or materials without academic penalty to the child.

Thank you Alberta for upholding the family as the fundamental unit of society, and for setting this profound precedent for the rest of Canada!

 

. . . .

 

Petition Impacts Legislature!

 

Province of Alberta Hansard, Monday, June 1, 2009, afternoon session.

 

The Speaker: The hon. Member for Airdrie-Chestermere.

“Mr. Anderson: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

 

I would like to table a petition signed by 820 Alberta parents, compiled over roughly a 72 hour period, which reads as follows.

 

This petition urges the Government of Alberta to follow through with its proposal to enshrine in Alberta’s Human Rights Legislation the right of parents to be notified when school curriculum or materials include the explicit teaching of religion, sexuality or sexual orientation, as well as the right of parents to opt their children out of participation in such curriculum or materials without academic penalty to the child.

 

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.”

 

 

We send our heartfelt gratitude to all of you who took the time to become informed about this critical measure and spoke out by signing our parental rights petition, contacting your MLA, and encouraging others to become informed.

 

You made a difference by sending a strong message to the Alberta legislature that Albertans believe parental rights are a fundamental human right and should be enshrined in the Human Rights Act.

 

In just a matter of days, word spread via the Internet and over 1,000 Albertans spoke out through our petition.

 

You can see the list of signatures here and read the many insightful comments: http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/enshrine-parental-rights-in-alberta-human-rights-legislation.html

 

On Monday, June 1, MLA Rob Anderson (Airdrie-Chestermere) presented our petition to the house in the afternoon legislative session.

 

Later that evening, Mr. Anderson again referred to our petition during third reading debate on Bill 44 stating:

 

The hon. Member for Edmonton-Strathcona earlier had mentioned that she believed the majority of parents were against this bill. I could not disagree with her more on this point.”

 

Mr. Anderson then referred to our petition’s over 900 signatures by Monday night as proof.

 

After quoting four of the comments from our supporters posted on our petition Anderson concluded by saying:

 

I could go on. There are hundreds and hundreds of comments like this. There are many others, but the point is, honourable member, that there are thousands and thousands of parents, the silent majority, severely normal Albertans that are extremely happy with this legislation, that believe it’s right to affirm the right of parents as being the primary educators of their children in these subjects. I think that it’s a credit to this government that it has stood up for what is right on this matter despite the inevitable cries of foul that come from the opposition benches.”

 

 

. . . Alberta Passes Bill 44!

 

Premier Stelmach allowed his Tory caucus a free vote on Bill 44.

 

After heated debate, it passed 35 – 7 in the early hours of the morning on June 2, with all the Conservatives in the house supporting the bill, and all the NDP and Liberal opposition voting against it.

 

MLAs Voting For: Ady, Anderson, Benito, Berger, Bhardwaj, Blackett, Boutilier, Campbell, Dallas, Danyluk, Denis, Doerksen, Drysdale, Elniski, Fritz, Griffiths, Groeneveld, Horne, Johnson, Johnston, Knight, Liepert, Lukaszuk, Marz, McQueen, Morton, Oberle, Olson, Prins, Quest, Renner, Rodney, Sarich, Stelmach, Webbber.

 

MLAs Voting Against: Blakeman, Chase, Hehr, Mason, Notley, Swann, Taylor.

 

http://www.assembly.ab.ca/ISYS/LADDAR_files/docs/hansards/han/legislature_27/session_2/20090601_1930_01_han.pdf

 

Bill 44 and amendments as passed: http://www.assembly.ab.ca/net/index.aspx?p=bills_status&selectbill=044

 

 

. . . Take Action Alberta: Send your 1 click letter

 

Let us not neglect our opportunity to say thank you for enshrining parental rights!

 

Send your 1 click letter to Premier Stelmach, Minister Blackett, Education Minister Hancock, and your MLA to let them know of your appreciation for the MLAs who voted in support of the family as the fundamental unit of society by enshrining parental rights in the Albert Human Rights Act.

 

Take Action:

Send your 1 click letter. “Thank you Alberta for Enshrining Parental Rights” http://unitedmothers.ca/links/1click/

 

All it takes is 5 minutes to make a difference.

 

. . . Take Action Other Provinces: Send your 1 click letter

 

Residents of other provinces: Send your 1 click letter encouraging your premier and justice minister to enshrine parental rights in your human rights act.

 

Send your 1 click letter today. “Our Province Needs to Enshrine Parental Rights” http://unitedmothers.ca/links/1click/

 

All it takes is 5 minutes to make a difference.

 

Worth Reading:  Parental rights:  Whose kids are they, anyway?
            By Nigel Hannaford, Calgary Herald, May 30, 2009

 ....For once then, I find I'm with the Alberta government, which has rightly decided moms and dads who didn't like what was happening in B. C. shouldn't have to worry about it happening here. Bill 44 obliges schools to let parents know if there's a module coming up that deals with religion, human sexuality or sexual orientation. How hard can that be? Post it on the web, send home a note. Twitter.
 
Whether a parent's fears are reasonable, or their opinions offend today's self-proclaimed progressives, is not the point. What matters is that some decisions belong to parents, among them what their children are taught where fundamental beliefs about the world and morality often collide.
 
Children belong to parents, not the state, by right. Now, if we could just get more parents to accept their parallel responsibility to guide, inform and instruct. . . .
 
At least Alberta has offered a tool, however small, to those who are willing to do so.”

 

Read the entire article here:  
http://www.calgaryherald.com/opinion/Parental+rights+Whose+kids+they+anyway/1646317/story.html

 

 [To visit ithe United Mothers and Fathers website, click on the link to it in the column to the right.]

 

 

, From Christianity Today online:

Stopping Discrimination

Proposed EU law may force out faith-based social services.

Under an anti-discrimination directive passed by the European Union Parliament in April, Christian churches, schools, and social services in Europe cannot limit their membership to those who share their beliefs. The directive, which the parliament passed by a 360-277 vote, must be passed unanimously by member states for it to become law.

The directive expands anti-discrimination protection beyond employment to health care, social benefits, education, and "access to goods and services." Originally intended to prChotect the disabled, the proposal was expanded to include discrimination against religion and belief, age, or sexual orientation. Exemptions in the draft legislation for "organizations based on religion and belief" were removed before the final vote.

"In its present form, I would say I am extremely concerned," said Don Horrocks, head of public affairs for the European Evangelical Alliance "It is very serious, though many regard it as extreme." He believes the directive is unlikely to be passed in its present form, and expects that the government may hold public consultations before it is finalized.

If the directive were passed into law, faith-based social services would face problems, said Luke Goodrich, legal counsel at the The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty.

For example, faith-based schools and daycare centers could be barred from taking applicants' religion into account for enrollment and employment. Marriage counselors and adoption agencies could have less discretion in accepting clients.

[Read the whole article "Stopping Discrimination" in Christianity Today online.]

 

British Churches to be Forced to Hire 
Active Homosexual Youth Workers under Equality Bill

By Hilary White

LONDON, May 21, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com ) - British churches will be forced to accept practicing homosexuals or "transsexuals" in positions as youth workers and similar roles, under upcoming equality legislation, the government has said. The Labour government's Equality Bill will prohibit churches from refusing to hire active homosexuals even if their religion holds such behavior to be sinful, said deputy equalities minister Maria Eagle.

The legislation is due to come into force next year, and churches fear that it will force them to act against their religious convictions in a broad range of areas. Eagle indicated at a conference called "Faith, Homophobia, Transphobia, & Human Rights" in London, that the legislation "will cover almost all church employees."

"The circumstances in which religious institutions can practice anything less than full equality are few and far between," she told delegates. "While the state would not intervene in narrowly ritual or doctrinal matters within faith groups, these communities cannot claim that everything they run is outside the scope of anti-discrimination law.

"Members of faith groups have a role in making the argument in their own communities for greater LGBT acceptance, but in the meantime the state has a duty to protect people from unfair treatment."

The bill allows a religious exemption for roles deemed to be "for the purposes of an organised religion" but restricts this definition to those who conduct liturgical celebrations or spend their time teaching doctrine.

The Daily Telegraph quoted Neil Addison, a Roman Catholic barrister and expert on religious discrimination law, who said that the bill will leave churches powerless to defend the fabric of their organization. "This is a threat to religious identity. What we are losing is the right for organizations to make free choices," he said

Equality commissioners include the homosexual lobbyist, Ben Summerskill, the head of the leading British homosexualist activist group Stonewall. Summerskill has called for churches to be forced to employ homosexuals and for the police to stop Christians who were peacefully protesting against 'gay rights' laws outside Parliament.

Tony Grew, a homosexualist activist and the former editor of PinkNews.co.uk, wrote recently that the Equality Bill will "entrench gay rights in all aspects of public life." Grew wrote on PinkNews that the bill will open unprecedented opportunities for homosexuals.

The bill, he said will cover central government departments, local authorities, education bodies, NHS bodies and the police service, plus a wide range of other public and private bodies, including churches and church-run institutions. It will impose the "Equality Duty" on all organizations providing public services, he said, such as residential care homes that "would have to consider the needs of same-sex couples."

Read related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

Enforced "Diversity" will make Britain "First Modern Soft Totalitarian State"
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2009/may/09050602.html

UK: Religious Schools May Not Teach Christian Sexual Morals "As if They Were Objectively True"
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007/mar/07030504.html

Even an Openly Homosexual Actor has Condemned New UK Law Which Would Criminalize Criticizing Homosexuality
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007/oct/07101101.html

"Climate of Fear" Growing in Britain for Christian Civil Marriage Registrars
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/may/08052204.html

 

 

 

Jim Hnatiuk - Leader of the Christian Heritage Party

 CHP NEWS RELEASE
Jan 27, 2009

For immediate release

 

 

Human Rights Commission 'Dismisses' hate charges against CHP Canada!

 

OTTAWA, Jan. 27, 2009 - The Christian Heritage Party of Canada and the CHP's former leader have been notified by the Canadian Human Rights Commission that allegations of 'hate' by an Edmonton man against the Party, one of its Electoral District Associations and former leader Ron Gray have been dismissed.

 

The CHRC dismissed the three complaints because "the content and context of the material which forms the basis of the complaint is not likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt based on sexual orientation," says the letter from Lucie Veillette, secretary of the Commission, to Ron Gray. "Accordingly, the file on this matter is now closed."

 

Gray was critical of the CHRC's procedures, and the effect its proceedings can have of "chilling" public discussion of important policy issues.

 

"I wrote to the CHRC about these complaints Feb. 19, 2007--almost two years ago--and have not yet had a reply to that letter," Gray said. "The proceedings have cost about $50,000. Fortunately, there were people across Canada who believed in free speech enough to cover those costs with voluntary donations.

 

"I want to thank the hundreds of people who helped to defend free speech rights in Canada by contributing to our legal defense fund.

 

"But the CHRC's method of operation is both slipshod and unjust. The complainant bore no costs at all for filing a frivolous and groundless complaint; as Ezra Levant has said, 'The process is the punishment'--whether the respondent is innocent or guilty.

 

"The idea of protecting people and groups from 'hate speech' that incites to violence is still sound," Gray said. "But such incitement is already a criminal offence, and the defense against it belongs in criminal court, where the normal rules of evidence and the presumption of innocence apply. In a real court, these ridiculous charges would never have been admitted."

 

The new CHP Leader Jim Hnatiuk maintains that the CHP is the only federal political party in Canada that has and will continue to defend "traditional marriage" between one man and one woman.

 

The new CHP Leader, Jim Hnatiuk, re-affirms the commitment of the CHP to fight for the repeal of Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act. "We are the only political party which is taking seriously the threat to our freedom of speech posed by this repressive piece of legislation."

This follows on the heals of last summer's fight for freedom of the press, in which Human Rights Commissions were forced to back down from their investigations of Ezra Levant, Macleans Magazine and Mark Steyn.

These cases against the CHP and Ron Gray were a test of the political metal of our Party. Would  we kowtow to having our freedom of political opinion taken away? "We did not," Hnatiuk states, "and we will not!"

Hnatiuk also affirms his Party's will to fight against the repression of freedom of speech such as suffered by Rev. Stephen Boissoin and Dr. Chris Kempling.

"We're in this for the long haul; for the sake of all Canadians," Hnatiuk confirms.

 

-30- 

 

Contact:

CHP Leader Jim Hnatiuk, 1-888-868-3247 or leader@chp.ca

 

Dr. Chris Kempling is Leaving the Public School System    
[from the May-June, 2008, British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life E-Mail Bulletin]

Dr. Chris Kempling, the Christian teacher and school counsellor who has been harassed over the last number of years and penalized for speaking out in his own time against the pro-homosexuality propaganda program being promoted for use in the schools, has decided to leave the public school system.  We trust that this will bring a greater measure of freedom for Chris, but it does not prevent the BC College of Teachers from continuing their attempt to penalize him further for exercising his democratic rights and speaking out according to his conscience.  He is going to need our continued support in the months ahead.   

 

 

New Action of BC College of Teachers Against Chris Kempling Highlights the Perilous State of Freedom in Canada

February 6, 2008

We have just received word We have just received word

As we have said before, the action taken against Chris Kempling is significant because it represents a threat to freedom of speech, freedom of religion, political freedom, and the freedom of the educational system.  It should be a warning to Canadians of all stripes who value our national heritage.

 

An Important Message from Dr. Chris Kempling

Friends and Colleagues at BCPTL:

 On January 28, 2008, I received another citation from the BC College of Teachers.  They have laid 12 new charges against me for "conduct unbecoming a member".  They include:  writing a letter to the editor as the representative of my political party objecting to the then proposed same sex marriage law, submitting an essay for publication on the BCTPL website (which was also published in the Calgary Herald), submitting an essay to a family journal in Germany (which they have not read), for being the "local representative of the Christian Heritage Party", and for having "knowledge" that an article written about me by CHP Leader Ron Gray was published on the party's website.  The list goes on, and is the most Orwellian document I have ever read.  My lawyer told me that I should expect a very substantial suspension.  I've been subpoenaed for a four day hearing in late September. 

I've decided I've had enough of the College of Teachers.  I'ver resigned my position with the Quesnel School District to take a job with St. Ann's Academy in Kamloops.  Although the remuneration is less, it is worth it to me not to have to be a member of the BCCT.  Unfortunately, one side effect of this decision was that the BC Teacher's Federation has cancelled my legal aid, so my lawyer has withdrawn her services.  There is a great deal of legal preparation needed before the hearing, so I have appealed the BCTF decision to the executive committee on a technicality.  Should that appeal fail, I've asked Kevin Boonstra of Kuhn and Company to represent me.  I have sufficient funds in my legal defense fund to cover his costs for the hearing (but I was hoping to use those funds for my next Supreme Court appeal).  The Lord provided last time--every cent--and I'm trusting Him for this next battle, too.  Please pray for me as I continue to take a stand on this very important social issue.

Chris Kempling
[from an e-mail dated June 23, 2008]

 

Chris Kempling to Quit BC Teachers' College after Years of Harassment for Christian Beliefs


By Hilary White
 
QUESNEL, BC, July 7, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Dr. Chris Kempling will be leaving his position in the public school system after years of harassment for his Christian beliefs and his moral stand against the campaign to  promote homosexuality in schools. Kempling has announced he will be taking a job at St. Ann's Academy in Kamloops.

Earlier this year Kempling received a fresh list of citations for "conduct unbecoming a member" of the BC College of Teachers (BCCT) for his exposition of the Christian position on homosexuality, which fact Kempling said drove him to leave the College of Teachers.
 
Kempling said that although this move will afford him greater freedom, it will not prevent the BCCT from continuing their attempt to penalize him for having spoken out against their homosexualist program. 
 
In January this year, the BCCT laid 12 charges against Kempling, citing him for his letters to editors; for quoting biblical passages about homosexual behaviour in an interview with CBC Radio; and for having published an article, re-published by the Calgary Herald in December 2003, outlining the differences between social liberals and social conservatives.
 
"I've decided I've had enough of the College of Teachers," Kempling said in announcing his decision to change jobs. "Although the remuneration is less [at St. Ann's], it is worth it to me not to have to be a member of the BCCT."

One upshot of the decision to leave the College, however, is the loss of Kempling's legal aid fund, which was provided by the College. The schoolteacher will be covering his own legal costs for an upcoming hearing with the College, but he still faces enormous financial challenges as he throws himself into a fight that is anticipated to take years and which he has said he intends to pursue all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada if necessary.
 
Kempling was also cited by the College for publishing a scholarly article in a German periodical on homosexuality, for offering "orientation change therapy" to homosexual people and for mentioning this in a radio interview, and for "for having knowledge," while a candidate for the Christian Heritage Party, that an article written by party leader Ron Gray in support of Kempling was posted on the party's website.
 
Kempling says the list of charges is "the most Orwellian document I have ever read." He also says his lawyer had warned him to "expect a very substantial suspension" if he remained a member of the College. Kempling has been subpoenaed for a four day hearing in late September.
 
The mild-mannered teacher has been employed as a teacher and counsellor by the Quesnel School District at a high school in Quesnel, British Columbia since 1990. In 1997, he began his life in the limelight as one of Canada's most prominent proponents of free speech and traditional values when he wrote a series of letters to the local papers warning parents and citizens of the efforts of the school system to normalise homosexuality to children.
 
Kempling wrote in the Quesnel Cariboo Observer, "I refuse to be a false teacher saying that promiscuity is acceptable, perversion is normal, and immorality is simply 'cultural diversity' of which we should be proud."
 
For writing this, in 2001 Kempling was cited and suspended for professional misconduct by the BCCT. In January, 2003, Kempling expressed his views on CBC radio, at which point his school district instructed him not to express his views on homosexuality in school or in public. But Kempling has chosen to continue to speak out against the homosexualist political doctrines and has stood as a candidate for the Christian Heritage Party in the Cariboo-Prince George riding.
 

 

Human Rights Commission Drops Complaint Against Catholic Magazine
Judicial Review Still Possible

TORONTO, July 4, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Canadian Human Rights Commission has dropped a complaint by a homosexual activist against Catholic Insight a Toronto-based national Catholic news magazine.  A year and a half - and many thousands of dollars in legal fees - after a nine-point human rights complaint was filed by Edmonton-based homosexual activist Rob Wells, Catholic Insight has been informed that the case has been dropped.  However, a judicial review before the Federal Court is still possible should the complainant pursue that avenue.

In a letter the Commission noted that it decided "to dismiss the complaint because the material (produced by Catholic Insight) is not likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt based on sexual orientation."  It added that "the file on this matter has now been closed."

Wells filed the complaint over the magazine's allegedly offensive coverage of homosexual activism and the issues it has affected. According to editor Father Alphonse de Valk, however, the magazine has consistently set out the Roman Catholic Church's position on such questions, making it clear that persons with same-sex attraction must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity and every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided.

"We welcome the Canadian Human Rights Commission's decision in this matter and were confident from the outset that we would be vindicated," said Father de Valk. He added that his publication not only has the right, but the responsibility, to report, analyze, comment on, and criticize where necessary, homosexual activism as it pertains to important social issues such as the nature of marriage, adoption rights, the allocation of social benefits, burdens on the health system caused by unhealthy behaviours and so on.

"It is chilling to think that a publication can be hauled before a government tribunal simply for reporting to interested citizens developments in these areas of controversy," said Father de Valk. "This matter underscores once again the necessity of urgent reform of the Canadian human rights system." He added that, coupled with a series of actions launched by a Toronto-based homosexual activist, Catholic Insight has been unnecessarily burdened with $20,000 in legal fees to date.

Given the consistently unsuccessful nature of these homosexual activist attacks upon it, Catholic Insight will now examine the prospects of launching countering legal actions against those who have been unnecessarily harassing and financially burdening the publication, said Father de Valk.

 

Rights commission ‘remedy’ flawed

By Joe McLaughlin - Red Deer Advocate - June 17, 2008

A lot of folks in Alberta and beyond are feeling bruised and abused by the Alberta human rights commission’s conduct in dealing with a letter to the editor that was published on this page six years ago today.

We at the Advocate are among them.

We have had our eyes opened to some state-sanctioned ugliness.

The letter, by a local pastor, expressed love and compassion for some homosexuals, while decrying the activist homosexual agenda of some educators, MPs, judges (and possibly, though not specifically mentioned, Advocate editorialists who have long supported gay rights.)

Stephen Boissoin’s letter promoted a flurry of responses, pro and con, in our pages and two complaints to the Alberta human rights commission against the Advocate.

Both complaints were successfully resolved with no finding of fault, no Advocate admission of wrongdoing, no promise to act any differently in the future.

Darren Lund, a former Red Deer high school teacher now at the University of Calgary, also lodged a complaint against Boissoin. That led to a lengthy, dispiriting process that culminated at the end of May with the rights commission ordering Boissoin:

• to pay two people whom the commission acknowledges were not direct victims of his words — $5,000 to Lund for ridicule and harassment and up to $2,000 to a witness;

• to apologize in writing to Lund;

• to ask that the Advocate publish his letter of apology and the commission’s seven-page Decision on Remedy.

Boissoin has no intention of apologizing, as he makes clear in a letter on this page.

The galling presumption of the rights commission to subvert a newspaper’s own judgments over whether, when or where it should publish coerced opinions offers a window into its dangerous thinking.

The commission has its own website where it can readily publish any and all of its documents. Curiously though, more than two weeks after its Decision on Remedy was handed down, that ruling was not posted.

The more fundamental and serious defects of the rights commission surround its flawed processes that can lead to repressive and dangerous fallout.

[Click here to read the whole article on the website of the Red Deer Advocate.]

I stand behind my 2002 letter

June 17, 2008

[letter from Stven Boissoin in the Red Deer Advocate]

Re: June 7 Advocate news story Human rights ruling disputed:

The story is about the Alberta human rights commission ruling that orders me to offer Darren Lund a written public apology.

It quotes Lund saying, “I certainly didn’t request an apology, so that was a bit of a surprise.”

“I don’t see the value in an insincere apology.”

Lund’s response fails to surprise me.

What’s interesting is that an apology is precisely what he sought for almost six years.

Lund’s original complaint to the rights commission asked that I pay thousands of dollars in fines to him and to Egale Canada, a pro-gay lobby group, in addition to a written apology.

He further requested that if I failed to provide the apology, an order be put into place that would ban me from having my opinions published in every major newspaper in Alberta.

Egale responded publicly by refusing to accept a fine designated to them.

Egale further stated that though it does not agree with my opinions, more importantly, it did not support Lund’s complaint against me.

After Lund’s original complaint was rejected, he appealed on University of Calgary letterhead.

Unfortunately, his appeal was granted and he amended his request for a remedy.

He asked for $5,000 for himself, $5,000 payable to an arm of the Alberta Teachers’ Association plus, once again, a written apology.

Here is his request for the apology word for word: “Dr. Lund requests the panel provide an order directing Mr. Boissoin to publish a full apology in the Red Deer Advocate within one month of this panel’s decision. Mr. Boissoin is to apologize for submitting the article and for his views on homosexuality.”

Lund did not just request an apology for my letter to the editor but also for my personal, deeply held religious views.

He went on to request that “If Mr. Boissoin fails to comply with the order, that the panel provide an order disallowing the publication of Mr. Boissoin’s views on homosexuality in any of the major print media in Alberta, including the Red Deer Advocate, Red Deer Express, Calgary Herald, Calgary Sun, Edmonton Journal, Edmonton Sun and Lethbridge Herald.”

These excerpts can be verified at http://www.albertahumanrights.ab.ca/LundDarren113007Pa.pdf

Lund is correct when he says that there is no value in an insincere apology.

But instead of acknowledging that for the last six years he has sought an order that I provide one, he acts totally surprised.

I will never offer an apology. I stand behind what I said (my interpretation of it) in my 2002 letter to the editor.

Stephen Boissoin

Red Deer

 

 

We hope that not only his fellow-Christians, but all who retain a love for our basic freedoms, will respond to Chris's appeal in the letter immediately below:
A Letter from Chris Kempling 
on the Latest BC College of Teachers Action Against Him

February 5, 2008

Friends:

I regret to inform you that the BC College of Teachers has again cited me for conduct unbecoming a teacher, in a letter dated January 28, 2008. They have cited me for participating in a CBC radio interview where I quoted the Bible saying that homosexual behaviour is a barrier to salvation, for contributing an essay discussing the philosophical differences between social liberals and social conservatives (published in the Calgary Herald on December 29, 2003), for publishing a scholarly article in a German family journal on the topic of homosexuality, for offering orientation change therapy as part of my private counselling practice and mentioning this in a radio interview, and, incredibly, for "knowing" that an article written by Christian Heritage Party leader Ron Gray in support of me was posted on the party's website. They also cited me for being "the local representative of the Christian Heritage Party". This is certainly true as I was the candidate for the CHP, Canada's sixth largest registered political party, in the last federal election in the Cariboo-Prince George riding (I came 5th out of 8 candidates.) All of the items listed occurred between February, 2003 and April, 2005.

The last time I checked, we had freedom of speech and freedom of religion in Canada, and the right to join the political party of our choice. It appears to me that these rights are in jeopardy, as the BC College of Teachers has threatened to withdraw my license to teach, despite the fact that there were no complaints registered with the College as a result of any of the items they listed. I am currently working in the Quesnel school district, am abiding by my letter of direction, and have been told by my principal that he has no concerns about my conduct or my job performance, which includes working professionally with students of all orientations.

This is extremely distressing for me and my family, and I would welcome your prayers. It appears that I may have to ask those who care about freedom to help me defend myself again. The registered trust fund is called the:

Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund, c/o Mr. Jim Sagert, Trustee, 798 Beaubien Avenue, Quesnel, BC V2J 1A6.

Letters of acknowledgement will be issued, but, as it is not a charity, there can be no tax receipts.

I am not afraid to face them but please do not leave me like Uriah to face the enemy alone. I take comfort in the words of our Lord: "Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven..."

I am happy, because I know my Christian brothers and sisters will stand with me as I face this trial yet again.

Dr. Chris Kempling Psy.D. R.C.C.

Quesnel, BC

 

What I’m not Allowed to Say
-by Dr. Chris Kempling Psy.D. R.C.C. October 20, 2007
[1984 some 20 years later]
[What follows immediately below is a print version of the speech given by Dr. Kempling at the Dr. Chris Kempling Appreciation Dinner put on by British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life.  It should be noted that this was a private dinner for those who paid the fee charged.]


I am not allowed to speak publicly about homosexuality.  I’ve been banned from being a school counsellor.  I’ve been convicted of “personal harassment” because a colleague didn’t like a letter to the editor I wrote, even though I had never once communicated with that person on the matter.  I’ve served a total of four months of suspension without pay and have countless letters of discipline on my personnel file, none of which has to do with my on-the-job performance.  It’s no picnic standing up to the gay juggernaut.  But I haven’t given up yet.

On Thursday, I attended a workshop at the BC School Counsellors Conference, entitled Coming Out and Sexual Minority Students:  What’s the Big Deal?  The presenter urged us to help confused teenagers come out to their peers.  So I thought I’d inform him that there was a big deal.  I asked him if he was aware of the research done by Gary Remafidi, a homosexual pediatrician, who found in 1991 that ¾ of all first suicide attempts by gay youth followed self-labeling, and that 1/3 attempt suicide in the first year after coming out.  Dr.  Remafidi also found that in his study group, 30% admitted to prostituting themselves, 51% had been arrested for a criminal offense and 85% used illegal drugs.  Yet this is the “healthy” lifestyle the school system wants to urge our young people to embrace as “normal”.

Here is some additional data of this normal alternative lifestyle, done right here in Vancouver by Dr.  Robert Hogg, at the BC Centre of Excellence in HIV-AIDS.  He studied 700 gay men under the age of 30.  He found that the level of HIV infections increased an astonishing 300% in the previous five years and that their lifespan was being shortened by 8-20 years.  Hogg and his colleagues continue to be upset when social conservatives quote his statistics.  Yet here we are on the brink of changing the entire school curriculum in BC to teach that homosexual behaviour is safe and normal.  It is neither, and that is why I have taken the risks I have.

Perhaps I’ll briefly recap how this all got started.  On May 9th of 2002 I was convicted of conduct unbecoming a member of the BC College of Teachers . The reason was because I expressed my opinion in my local newspaper. Between April 1997 and July, 2000, I wrote one freelance column and six letters to the editor of my town’s newspaper, which questioned the wisdom of promoting the homosexual agenda. I provided factual information on rates of promiscuity and disease infection which had been previously published in scholarly journals. I said that many religions consider homosexuality to be immoral, that it may be caused by negative psycho-social influences, and that it was nothing to be applauded. I said that I would refuse to be a false teacher, compromising my faith to teach information which the Bible clearly says is immoral. I said this not in my classroom, or my staff room, but on the editorial pages of my local newspaper. I had thought that the editorial page was a place where all Canadians have the right to express their points of view, whether other people like them or not. I highly value the freedom of the press, and all points of view should be represented in our newspapers, including those opposed to ours.

       I appealed the conviction to the BC Supreme Court, but lost in February of 2004.  I appealed to the BC Court of Appeal and lost again in June, 2005.  I appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada but it was  rejected.  As a last resort, I sent my case to the UN Commission on Human Rights in Geneva .  I did not get any response at all.  As a result of my case, teachers are not be able to write privately to their own supervisors to question a new curriculum resource,  write privately their own elected officials on a matter of public policy, nor can they able to address the topic of homosexuality in post-graduate research papers. I was disciplined for doing all of these things.  This is an unacceptable restriction of freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and freedom of intellectual expression.

The College presented no complaints about what I had written publicly from teachers, none from students, none from parents, and most importantly, none from any member of the gay community. The people who did disagree with me did so by writing their own letters to the editor, and I fully support their right to do that.

My school district supervisors have also decided to silence me. They have disciplined me repeatedly for speaking out, including for advertising my intention to offer orientation change therapy services through my private practice.  On March 31,  2005, I appeared before a formal hearing of the Quesnel School Board to explain why I publicly criticized the government’s same sex marriage legislation.  I was then suspended for three months without pay, even though not one homosexual person has gone on record to complain about what I wrote. I filed a Human Rights complaint against the school district for religious discrimination, but surprise, surprise, they did not even bother to investigate my complaint.    In June , 2005, I was requested by the parliamentary committee examining the same sex marriage bill to testify before them.  I agreed, but when I returned from Ottawa , I was slapped with yet another disciplinary letter.  It was only after MP’s Vic Toews and the NDP’s Bill Siksay (who happens to be gay) wrote to the school board reminding them that is a federal offense to intimidate an official witness of parliament that they backed down. 

My latest letter of discipline came last spring.  In an article discussing the proposed legislation increasing the age of consent from 14 to 16, our local Member of Parliament was quoted as saying that there was very little opposition to this bill.  But I happened to know that there was opposition to it from EGALE Canada (Equality for Gays and Lesbians Everywhere).  They submitted a formal brief to Parliament arguing that raising the age of consent was a bad idea.  So I wrote a letter to the editor pointing out that there was opposition to the bill and it was from EGALE.  I received a letter from my Director of Instruction saying I had crossed the line again.  I then challenged my superior to defend EGALE’s wish to have continued sexual access to 14 and 15 year olds, but imagine that, he declined and backed off further discipline.

I have one more round to go with the College of Teachers , who are considering whether to discipline me again for my January 2005 letter to the editor criticizing same sex marriage.  I will likely be facing more discipline. I am a Christian seven days a week, both on the job and off the job, 
and I will not compromise my faith to teach falsehoods to children. 
As servants of the Most High God, it is our duty to speak up courageously 
for what is right.  I do not know what may become of me, 
of my career. 

But here is what the book of Ecclesiasticus says of such a situation, and this is God’s message for those of us who call Christ our Lord:  “My son, if you aspire to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for an ordeal.  Be sincere of heart, be steadfast, and do not be alarmed when disaster comes.  Cling to him and do not leave him, so that you may be honoured at the end of your days.  Whatever happens to you, accept it, and in the uncertainties of your humble state, be patient, since gold is tested in the fire, and chosen men in the furnace of humiliation.  Trust Him and he will uphold you, follow a straight path and hope in Him.  You who fear the Lord, wait for his mercy; do not turn aside in case you fall.  You who fear the Lord, trust him and you will not be bilked of your reward.  You who fear the Lord hope for good things, for everlasting happiness and mercy.  Look at the generations of old and see:  who ever trusted in the Lord and was put to shame?  Or who ever feared him steadfastly and was left forsaken?  Or who ever called out to him, and was ignored?  For the Lord is compassionate and merciful, he forgives sins, and saves in days of distress.  Woe to faint hearts and listless hands…Woe to the listless heart that has no faith, for such will have no protection.  Woe to you who have lost the will to endure; what will you do at the Lord’s visitation?  Those who fear the Lord do not disdain his words, and those who love him keep his ways.  Those who fear the Lord do their best to please him, and those who love him find satisfaction in his Law.  Those who fear the Lord keep their hearts prepared and humble themselves in his presence.  Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, not into the hands of men; for as His majesty is, so too is His mercy.”

My friends, the fate of our children rests with you, because the secular humanists who control our school systems are bent on imposing their worldview on all Canadian children, no matter what their sincere religious beliefs may be.  And if that conflicts with their parent’s beliefs—well too bad.  You can just keep quiet while we indoctrinate your children.  But here is what Abraham Kuyper, the great Dutch statesman who believed that Christian principles and civil politics were not incompatible:  “When the principles that run against your deepest convictions begin to win the day, then the battle is your calling, and peace has become sin.  You must, at the price of dearest peace, lay your convictions bare before friend and enemy with all the fire of your faith.”  Godless principles are now winning the day, and now is the time to go to battle for the lives of our children and our children’s children.

 Thank you for inviting me to speak, and may God bless you all.


 Dr.  Chris Kempling Psy.D. R.C.C. Registered Clinical Counsellor 250-983-3949 Quesnel , BC V2J 5R5 Kempling@telus.net

A Summary of Events Related to the Chris Kempling Case

(last updated February 12, 2008)

  So much time has elapsed since we first learned of Chris Kempling's situation, and the actions of the British Columbia College of Teachers have been so complex that it is easy to become confused about the sequence of events related to this case which is so crucial for education and for the right of free speech.  Reviewing the events affecting Chris may be useful and instructive for all of us.   

  The British Columbia College of Teachers (BCCT), in May of 2002, pronounced Kempling, a public-school teacher and counsellor, guilty of "conduct unbecoming a member."  His "offence"?  Criticizing aspects of the pro-homosexuality program of the British Columbia Teachers' Federation.  This criticizing had been done in his own time outside of the school setting.

In a “sentencing” session, a BC College of Teachers hearing panel in November 18th recommended that Chris be given a one-month suspension without pay.  (The panel did not actually hear Chris speak—only his lawyer.  Chris had not attended the hearing in May due to concerns about conflict of interest.) This recommendation was to be ratified (or modified) by the entire Council.   Later, since Chris had already appealed the original BCCT verdict of “conduct unbecoming” to the BC Supreme Court, an understanding was communicated to Chris that the BCCT would not ask that the penalty be served until after the BC Supreme Court decision (and then, of course, it would only be if the Court found in favour of the BCCT.)

In February of 2003 it was learned that the BCCT would not pronounce Chris’s penalty till later than expected, but that the BCCT (which is not bound by the recommendations of its own penalty panel) would consider a more severe penalty than the panel had recommended.

  Later he heard that the BCCT had agreed to the request that they hear Chris Kempling in person.  We interpreted their intentions as being to actually hear Chris speak.   But at the April 1st hearing, when Chris Kempling appeared before them, the members of that body apparently did not have the curiosity or the interest to avail themselves of that opportunity, and only heard Chris’s lawyer.

  Chris did not hear the BCCT verdict for some days, but in a message of April 14th Chris wrote:  “The College has decided that my penalty is to be one month’s suspension (the original recommendation of their own committee in November . . . .)  It is to commence on  May 1st unless they agree to suspend it until after the court renders its decision.”

On July 28th to 30th, Chris Kempling’s appeal of the BCCT ruling was heard in BC Supreme Court.  Judge Holmes reserved decision.  On February 3, 2004, after over six months of waiting, Chris learned that the judge had ruled against him, siding with the BC College of Teachers.   In a message dated February 4th, Chris announced his intention to appeal the ruling of the British Columbia Court of Appeal.*   This appeal was made.
   
Kempling and his legal team faced off against the College of Teachers and their allies on April 21st and 22nd in the British Columbia Court of Appeal.  

Even before his Appeals Court hearing in Vancouver, Chris had been dealt yet another blow.  In a decision handed down on April 4, 2005, Quesnel School District Superintendent Ed Napier suspended  Chris Kempling for three months.  Dr. Kempling is also the local spokesperson of the federal Christian Heritage Party, and had written a letter to the editor of the local newspaper on behalf of his party, criticizing the Liberal government's same sex marriage legislation.  The school district did not provide a single example of disruption to the school system, or any negative effect of the letter.  [Click here to go to this letter.] They also ignored over a dozen letters of reference from supervisors and community members written in support of Dr. Kempling.  

           On June 13, 2005, in a decision that was unexpectedly fast--for the courts--the BC Appeals Court released its ruling regarding Chris Kempling's appeal of a BC Supreme Court decision.  The Appeals Court ruling supported the imposition on Dr. Chris Kempling of a one-month suspension from his teaching and counselling position in Quesnel School District.

   
Chris Kempling appealed the British Columbia Court of Appeal’s decision to the Supreme Court of Canada.  His new lawyer, David Brown of Stikeman Elliott in Toronto, filed leave to appeal on September 9th.    However, in January of 2006 the Supreme Court of Canada refused to hear his case.

      In July of 2005 Chris learned that he was facing more discipline. In June he had been invited to appear before the Parliamentary committee examining Bill C-38 (same sex marriage bill).  He had flown to Ottawa at their expense and testified as requested, representing the views of evangelical Christians, and as an official representative of the Christian Heritage Party.  In July he received a disciplinary letter for doing this.  

In March of 2006 Chris Kempling served the one-month suspension imposed by the British Columbia College of Teachers.   Chris has continued to be employed by Quesnel School District, and began work in September of 2006 as a "behaviour resource teacher." 

    On May 29, 2006 Chris received a letter from the College notifying him that they were putting him under investigation for his Christian Heritage Party letter of January (the one he had already served a 3 month suspension for).  They did so because the BCTF had abandoned his grievance over the issue.   In February of 2008 Chris received notice that the BC College of Teachers was citing him for conduct unbecoming a teacher.  Chris writes:   "They have cited me for participating in a CBC radio interview where I quoted the Bible saying that homosexual behaviour is a barrier to salvation, for contributing an essay discussing the philosophical differences between social liberals and social conservatives . . ., for publishing a scholarly article in a German family journal on the topic of homosexuality, for offering orientation change therapy as part of my private counselling practice and mentioning this in a radio interview, and, incredibly, for 'knowing' that an article written by Christian Heritage Party leader Ron Gray in support of me was posted on the party's website. They also cited me for being 'the local representative of the Christian Heritage Party. ' "

   
Endnote:

* Note that this is the correct term.  The appeal was from the BC Supreme Court to the BC Court of Appeal, which is a higher court than the BC Supreme Court.  Our apologies for getting this wrong on an earlier posting.

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Continue to check this BC Parents and Teachers for Life website to learn of further developments in Chris Kempling's case.

 

Bishop Henry calls for overhaul of human rights commissions

By Deborah Gyapong
Canadian Catholic News
[excerpt from article as posted by canadianchristianity.com]

CALGARY Bishop Fred Henry is calling for an overhaul of legislation governing human rights commissions.

"Human rights laws, designed as a shield, are now being used as a sword," Henry wrote in a December 31 email from Calgary, in what he described as an increasingly "bizarre" series of events.

The recent filing of human rights complaints against Maclean's magazine for an excerpt of Mark Steyn's bestselling book America Alone, and against Catholic Insight magazine for articles outlining Catholic teaching on homosexuality, are only the latest in a series of cases that have highlighted freedom of speech and religious freedom.

The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) described the Steyn and Catholic Insight cases as part of an "ongoing pattern in the use of human rights commissions to penalize the expression of unpopular opinions," in a December 31 alert to members entitled, 'Stop the use of human rights commissions in free speech cases.'

"The League is concerned about this disturbing trend, since it often involves opinions based on religious beliefs," said CCRL executive director Joanne McGarry.

Henry agrees, stating: "The issue is rarely true discrimination but rather censorship and enshrinement of a particular ideology through threats, sanctions and punitive measures."

In 2005, Henry faced two separate complaints to the Alberta Human Rights Commission (AHRC) for allegedly discriminatory comments in a pastoral letter on marriage. "I challenged one by one the standard arguments used to support same sex unions as the equivalent of traditional marriage," Henry stated.

Though the complaints were eventually dropped, Henry described the process as "fundamentally flawed," and closely resembling "kangaroo courts." Among those flaws, he maintained, were the "presumption of guilt until you can prove your innocence; the open ended time lines for dealing with a complaint; and unjust incurring of financial expenditures for the defendant in the simple event of a complaint being lodged."

The AHRC covers the complainants' costs. . . . .

The CCRL does not want to see HRCs involved in freedom of speech issues at all.

"The League has refrained from making hate speech complaints to any courts or commission, even though some of the anti-Catholic content we address, and the remarks directed at us in the course of our work, could certainly be described as demeaning if not downright hateful," McGarry said in the alert. "In our view, the importance of free speech supersedes whether we agree with what others are saying."

"As a civil rights organization, we recognize that freedom expression and freedom of religious expression two the most important values for Canadians," she said in an interview from Toronto. "We think the use of human rights tribunals to penalize the peaceable expression of religious viewpoints is a misuse of their original purpose."

Freedom of expression, she said, "is an important enough value that any curtailment of it must be held to the much higher standard required by a court." That standard, she said, includes the presumption of innocence, both parties facing equal costs, and the possibility that frivolous complaints could result in the complainant picking up the defendants court costs.

McGarry said the best way to address these issues is through dialogue, especially through the media. She said it is in the give and take of debate that most people learn about acceptable speech. "Politeness is not something that needs to be judicially imposed," she said.

McGarry's alert lists 11 examples, including Christian Heritage Party Leader Ron Gray, brought before the Canadian HRC and the Ontario HRC for a website article critical of homosexual conduct. The list can be read at their website.

-- Copyright Canadian Catholic News. Please do not reprint without permission.

Related stories:

Liberalism its own worst enemy
"The Blood Runs Cold" is the headline of Melanie Phillips' piece in the current issue of the British Spectator. "The lights are going out on liberal society," her column begins, "and it is the most liberal societies with their fingers on the switch." Canada's, for one. What makes Ms. Phillips' blood run cold is Human Rights Commissions in this country summoning Maclean's magazine and columnist Mark Steyn into their inquisitorial chambers to answer for their misdeeds.
George Jonas, CanWest Publications, December 20

Human Rights Commissions just like Hydra
Canada's Human Rights Commissars usually keep low in their swamp of political correctness, but this time they decided to stick their necks out. Perhaps it's a good thing. If Greek mythology is a guide, sticking one's neck out is a frequent prelude to getting one's head cut off. It happened to Hydra, the multi-headed monster of poisonous breath, the mythical beast our federal and provincial Human Rights bureaucracies most closely resemble. True, it required Hercules to finish off Hydra; it was the second of his twelve labours. Does the Herculean presence of Mark Steyn augur well for slaying Hydra's modern edition? I'd like to think so, especially with Maclean's editor Kenneth Whyte ably performing the role of Iolaus, cauterizing the hideous neck-stumps with journalistic firebrands so the decapitated monster can't grow them back.
George Jonas, CanWest Publications, December 27

It's a human right to be an idiot
Human rights laws and tribunals are based on the notion that being hired, promoted, serviced and esteemed is a human right. It isn't. Being hired, promoted, serviced and esteemed is a human ambition. It's a justifiable ambition, but still just an ambition.
George Jonas, National Post, January 5

Case by Muslim group against Maclean's tests limits of press freedom
Publisher says he would rather go bankrupt than cede editorial control to Islamic congress
Reuters, January 7


Canada Catholic League Calls for Halt to Use of Human Rights' Commissions in Free Speech Cases

List of Recent Cases

 

TORONTO, January 2, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The news in early December that Mark Steyn and Macleans Magazine are the subject of a complaint to the B.C. and federal Human Rights Commissions because of an article the magazine published, excerpted from Mr. Steyn's book "America Alone", is a higher-profile example of an ongoing pattern in the use of human rights' commissions to penalize the expression of unpopular opinions, says the Catholic League in a press release. 

The League is concerned about the disturbing trend, since it often involves opinions based on religious beliefs. In several cases, some of which has seen the League participate as an intervenor, attempts have been made to characterize scriptural passages as hate literature. While these commissions and their tribunals have generally been sympathetic to complaints of "offended feelings" brought by homosexual rights activists, those brought by Christians seeking support for their right to freedom of religion or religious expression have been less successful.

In fact, in two recent cases people applying to human rights commissions to have their religious rights respected in freedom of speech issues have received a poor response from the human rights commissions. One has been refused and there have been strong indications of disinterest on the other.

Susan Comstock and Dave MacDonald sought to have their union dues diverted to charitable organizations in protest of the union's use of their dues for political activism and anti-Catholic activity. In refusing, the commission noted in Mrs. Comstock's case that "no prohibited ground of discrimination was established."

David McDonald advised LifeSiteNews today that his case has not been dropped but the Canadian Human Rights Commission has still not communicated its final decision to him. An official with the commission left a Nov. 22 telephone message indicating the commission would not take the case because it involved religion and they lacked jurisdiction to hear religion cases. MacDonald was told he would receive a written report sent out the next day. However, he states he immediately sent a letter to the commission and has not yet received the promised written report or any other communications.

The League believes that the continued incursion of human rights' commissions in matters of peaceable free speech will have a chilling effect on freedom of expression. "When someone's words are disagreeable or contentious, the normal give-and-take of human discourse should be all the regulation that peaceable free speech requires," says the League.

The League provided a list of recent cases where human rights tribunal were used to quash or attempt to quash free speech:  [bold-facing by editor of this BCPTL website]

- As noted above, Mark Steyn and Maclean's magazine for the publisher's reprinting of a chapter of Steyn's book "America Alone," Complaint brought in November by the Canadian Islamic Congress, which said the article subjects Canadian Muslims to discrimination, hatred and contempt.

- Ron Gray, leader of the CHP, brought before the Ontario and Canadian HRCs by Edmonton activist Rob Wells for an article on the party's website critical of homosexual conduct. Among other things, Mr. Gray was told by a HRC mediator that "freedom of expression is an American concept."

- Catholic Insight magazine is the subject of a complaint to the Canadian Human Rights Commission due to material on its website critical of homosexual conduct. The passages of articles in question were written in the context of speaking out against the activists who agitated for adding so-called sexual orientation to the Hate Crimes Act in 2003, and the legalization of same-sex "marriage" in 2005.

- Steven Boissoin, a Christian pastor who faces punishment by the Alberta Human Rights Commission for a letter published in the Red Deer Advocate. (Case brought by University of Calgary professor Darren Lund.) The judge claimed a "circumstantial causal connection" could be made between the letter and an attack on a homosexual teenager in that city.

- John Di Cecco, a Kamloops, BC city councilor, fined $1,000 for by the BC Human Rights Tribunal when a complaint was brought in response to comments he made about homosexual conduct.

- Knights of Columbus of Port Coquitlam, BC, fined by the BC Human Rights Tribunal in December, 2005 for how they handled their refusal of the use of their hall for a lesbian "wedding" reception.

- Bishop Fred Henry in 2005 was on the receiving end of a human rights complaint for articulating the Church's teachings on same-sex marriage in a pastoral letter. (The complaint was later withdrawn after a meeting with the complainants, and substantial expense.)

- In 2002, the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission ordered the Saskatoon Star Phoenix and Hugh Owens to each pay $1,500 to three complainants because of the publication of an advertisement that quoted Bible verses on homosexuality. Four years later, this was overturned by the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal after the court ruled that the message, though offensive, didn't reach the level of inciting hatred. The League was part of an intervention to protest the labeling of Scriptural passages as hate speech.

- Bill Whatcott, charged with spreading hate against homosexual persons for the distribution of material objecting to an advertisement that ran in Saskatchewan's largest newspaper for homosexuals, Perceptions, seeking boys for activities that specifically mentioned that their age was "….not so relevant".  The material distributed by Mr. Whatcott also objected to material promoting "gay" culture and beliefs entering into the Saskatoon Public School System and the University of Saskatchewan. The appeal by Mr. Whatcott to the Saskatchewan Court of Queen's Bench from his conviction and fine of $17,500.00 by the Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal was denied by the Judgment of Mr. Justice F. Kovatch in a decision received on December 11, 2007.

- In British Columbia, Chris Kempling, a teacher at a public high school, was cited in May 2001 for professional misconduct by the BC College of Teachers (BCCT) for letters published in a local newspaper. As punishment he was suspended from teaching for one month. He appealed his suspension all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, which finally refused to hear the appeal in 2006.

When some CBC interviews in 2004 became the basis for a formal reprimand by the Quesnel School District, Kempling complained to the BC Human Rights Tribunal on the grounds that his religious freedom was being infringed, a complaint that the Tribunal rejected in November 2005.

- In 1999, Toronto printer Scott Brockie was ordered by the Ontario commission to pay a gay activist group $5,000 for refusing to print their letterhead.


"The League has refrained from making hate speech complaints to any courts or commissions, even though some of the anti-Catholic content we address, and the remarks directed at us in the course of our work, could certainly be described as demeaning if not downright hateful," said the League. "In our view, the importance of free speech supersedes whether we agree with what others are saying. That is why we have supported people in their right to freedom of speech and freedom of expression, particularly religious expression, in various court and tribunal cases. When we protest anti-Catholic defamation in the media, we do so pointedly, but we have never once said that such content should be illegal. Our hope, rather, is that a spirit of true dialogue will help make defamation rare."

Precedent-Setting Ruling Reinstates Canadian Pro-Life Activist’s Nursing License, Cancels Fine


By Hilary White

REGINA, January 18, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A Saskatchewan Court of Appeals has ruled that the suspension of a pro-life protester’s nursing license by the Saskatchewan Association of Licensed Practical Nurses (SALPN) was unconstitutional.

In 2002, Bill Whatcott, a licensed practical nurse, participated in a protest outside the Regina Planned Parenthood offices. The Association judged Whatcott’s protest to have constituted “professional misconduct” and suspended his nursing license and fined him $15,000.

Whatcott admitted in a court hearing to having carried signs with pictures of foetuses and captions saying “Planned Parenthood Aborts Babies” and “Planned Parenthood refers for abortions," "God's gift of life" and “choice is abortion”. Whatcott lost his initial case at the Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench and his appeal was later dismissed.

Court documents in the appeal note that the SALPN disciplinary committee did not address constitutional issues of Whatcott’s freedom of expression. Whatcott’s appeal was upheld by the court that said the case raised “constitutional law issues pertaining to freedom of expression”.

The ruling said, “The Discipline Committee did not engage in any of the balancing necessary to weigh Mr. Whatcott’s right to work, the high standards to which nurses must aspire and free speech. Given the existence of the interim injunction and the means to enforce it, one would not think the Discipline Committee’s decision was a proportionate response.”

The justices wrote that SALPN had failed to demonstrate that the restriction on Whatcott’s freedom of expression was reasonable “and the decision is thus unconstitutional.”

Whatcott praised the court decision, not only on his own behalf, but because it sets a precedent for other health care professionals who conscientiously object to abortion.

He wrote, “Christians and other moral Canadians, Dentists, Teachers, Doctors, Lawyers as well as Nurses can reference my case if they are bullied by their professional organizations as a result of a stand they take on a moral issue during their time off work.”

The ruling can be viewed online .

 

Surprise Appointment

Evangelical leader named to U.K commission upholding equal rights.

The appointment of Joel Edwards, general director of the U.K.'s Evangelical Alliance, as a commissioner to the nation's Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has drawn complaints from gay activists.

Formed to enforce legislation guaranteeing age, ethnic, disability, gender, and sexual preference equality, the EHRC brings together the U.K.'s three previous equality commissions. The Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2007, which went into effect on January 1, added prohibitions against treating anyone "less favorably than he treats or would treat others" on the grounds of sexual orientation. However, concessions within the act allow religious organizations to define standards of sexual behavior for their members and leaders.
[Click here to read the whole article on the Christianity Today website.]

 

CitizenLink, June 26, 2007

Ohio Teacher Doesn't Have to Pay Dues to NEA

Carol Katter, an Ohio teacher, no longer has to send her dues to the pro-abortion National Education Association, according to a ruling by U.S. District Judge Gregory Frost.

"I know where NEA money goes, and I knew I never wanted to be part of that," Katter told CNS News.

The NEA's Ohio affiliate argued that a religious-exemption law applied only to certain denominations. Katter is Catholic. The decision means Katter will be allowed to send her dues elsewhere.

Note by editor of BCPTL website:  This is an issue two of our BCPTL members fought and lost over in British Columbia many years ago.  Perhaps some BC teacher will be inspired to follow Carol Katter's example, and challenge the non-relevant uses of teachers' dues in this province.

 

 

 

Groups' Representatives Draw Up Statement of Principles in Response to the Corren Settlement Agreement in British Columbia
On September 23rd (2006), representatives from a number of groups, including British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life, agreed to a "A Statement of Principles of Fairness for Students and Parents and of How They Can be Used to Remedy the Injustices of the Corren Settlement Agreement."  Among the other groups whose representatives agreed to the statement were REAL Women of British Columbia, Christian Social Fellowship, Catholic Civil Rights League, and Christian Coalition.  Below we give the whole "Statement,"  including the four general principles, together with supporting citations and and bv a list showing how the principles "can be used to remedv the inequity of the Corren Settlement Agreement." 

A Statement of Principles of Fairness for Students and Parents and of

How They Can be Used to Remedy the Injustices of the Corren

Settlement Agreement

Principles

1. We affirm our common desire to see established within the schools of British Columbia an atmosphere in which harassment or abusive conduct directed at any student is not acceptable, regardless of their actual or apparent association or identification with any group.

2. Access to the means of influencing the development of curriculum for all subjects in British Columbia public schools should be open to all citizens without discrimination.  No special rights of access or influence should be given to particular private citizens or groups.

 

"Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability." Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms 15 (1)

 

3. Parents have the right to educate children in conformity with their moral and religious convictions. Public schools must be transparent and accountable to parents about what is taught to students. Teaching materials should be open to examination by parents, and particular care should be taken that parents are directly advised, well in advance, when sexuality or other controversial or sensitive topics are to be discussed.

 

"Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that should be

given to their children." From Article 26 - United Nations, 'Universal

Declaration on Human Rights' – 1948

 

"The best interests of the child shall be the guiding principle of those

responsible for his education and guidance; that responsibility lies in the

first place with his parents."

From the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of the Child, Principle 7

 

4. Nothing in the curriculum or practice of British Columbia public schools should denigrate the legally protected moral and religious beliefs of parents and children.

 

How the above principles can be used to remedv the inequity of the Corren Settlement Agreement

 

Preamble: Because it unfairly gives privileged procedural access to Peter Corren and Murray Corren, the Corren Settlement Agreement has created a dangerous precedent in the curriculum review process. We ask for recognition of the 'prior right’ of parents to choose the kind of education their children receive. We request that the Minister extend full consultation to parents and other stakeholders.

 

I. New Internal Review Guidelines for the development of IRPs ("Integrated Resource Packages") must be drawn up with input from all interested parties, as identified in the Charter Article 15 (1).

2. Similarly, input from all interested parties should be welcomed in finalizing each IRP.

3. The Social Justice 12 Course provided for in Section 3 of the Corren Settlement Agreement should be balanced with respect to Charter Article 15 (1) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

4. Delivery guidelines to assist teachers in delivering the Kindergarten to Grade Twelve curriculum should be developed openly with recognition given to the prior right of parents to choose the kind of education their children receive.

5. Parents of students should be permitted to make arrangements for Alternative Delivery of sensitive topics in a manner that respects the individual needs and interests of their children.

6. Any further changes in matters covered in the Corren Settlement should arrived at by a regular democratic process in a manner authorized by the legislature and subject to alteration by that body.

7. The Ministry of Education should send a letter to the parties named in the Corren Settlement Agreement (Section IB) affirming the prior right of parents and stating  policy of openness in the development of curriculum.

 

 

 

1  UN Universal Declaration on Human Rights  -- Article 26

 

 

 




In the United States:
Parents to Rally in Support of Jailed Massachusetts Father    
 9/4/2005
From an article by Robert Knight



Lexington Green, where Massachusetts colonists confronted the British in the opening battle of the American Revolution, will be the site for a rally to support a father who was arrested for questioning pro-homosexual materials at his children’s school.

Slated from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 6, the rally will feature David Parker and his wife Tonia.

David Parker was arrested on April 27 at Joseph Estabrook Elementary School in Lexington after refusing to leave when school officials declined to show him materials related to the promotion of homosexuality in the school. He had been alerted to the school’s materials when his child brought home some books, one of which celebrates “gay parenting.”

Massachusetts state law mandates notifying parents before discussing issues of human sexuality in the classroom.

In the wake of the British Columbia Supreme Court's ruling against him, Dr. Kempling has appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada, which may or may not agree to hear the case.  In addition to the other persecution he has faced, Chris Kempling is now facing discipline for his testimony before a parliamentary committee.

Chris Kempling Update—September 15, 2005

In my . . . update in April, I related that I had been suspended for three months without pay for writing a letter to the editor opposing same sex marriage.  I have now served the suspension and am back teaching (after working as a dump truck driver in the summer to make ends meet).  Unfortunately, my struggle continues.  In early June, the BC Court of Appeal ruled in favour of the College of Teachers, saying that although there was no evidence of harm or disruption to the school system, it was appropriate for the College of Teachers to discipline me for expressing my opinion off the job in letters to the editor.  For this reason I have appealed the Court of Appeal’s decision to the Supreme Court of Canada.  My new lawyer, David Brown of Stikeman Elliott in Toronto, filed leave to appeal on September 9th.  It is not known when the Supreme Court will make a decision on whether or not to hear the case—they only hear 15% of the cases referred to them.  If they choose not to hear it, I have will have to serve another one month’s suspension, and pay my opponents prior legal costs of over $23,000.  My lawyer has told me I have to pay their costs now, even if the Supreme Court chooses to hear the case.  This will deplete my legal defense fund entirely, leaving me without funds to proceed with the Supreme Court case or the Human Rights Tribunal case.  My lawyer feels that at least $50,000 will be needed for that, and a similar amount for the Human Rights case.

Note:  Chris's lawyer has informed him that he thinks the Supreme Court of Canada will make a decision by late January or early February on whether to hear his case, and that if they accept it, it will be 2007 before the case is heard.

My Human Rights Tribunal case against the Quesnel School Board for religious discrimination is still on-going.  I was disciplined for speaking with a CBC radio reporter about the orientation change services of my private Christian counseling practice.  They provided no evidence that anyone was concerned about this interview—they feel it is acceptable to prevent me from telling people that orientation change is possible.  I made it clear that most of my clients would be Christians, who know that acting on same sex attraction is sinful behaviour, and thus are more motivated to seek professional assistance.  I am currently providing treatment to a Christian client for this purpose, so I find it entirely unacceptable for my school district employer to interfere with a service offered by a Christian counselor to Christian people.  I was to have had a two day hearing in October, but my lawyer feels it will take 7-10 days and involve over a dozen witnesses.  A new date has yet to be scheduled.

 I’m hoping my employer will acknowledge that official witnesses of Parliament have special protection from harassment.

There is some good news to report, however.  Rev. Tristan Emmanuel of Equipping Christians for the Public Square held a fund-raising banquet for me in June in Hamilton, Ontario and presented me with a cheque for $18,000.  I have already given the entire amount to Mr. Brown as a down payment for the Supreme Court appeal.  God has supplied all my needs up to now—I’m just going to keep trusting Him for what it is still needed.  I’m very grateful for all of you who have generously given so far.  I would appreciate your prayers as I face the upcoming struggles.  Jesus warned us that we would face persecution for standing up for him.  He was right.
Note:  Chris Kempling sent us an addition to the above update.   In it he informed us that his lawyer told him that he thought the Supreme Court of Canada would make a decision by late January or early February on whether to hear his case, and that if they accepted it, it would be 2007 before the case was heard.

"Growing Support for Alberta Pastor Facing Human Rights Hearing Over Letters Against Homosexuality"


CALGARY, Alberta, September 14, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The case against Stephen Boissoin, a young Alberta pastor facing an Alberta Human Rights tribunal over letters he wrote on the issue of homosexuality, has received widespread publicity which is generating a growing wave of support for the Christian pastor, even from homosexuals.

In an interview with LifeSiteNews.com last night Boissoin revealed that he has received a barrage of phone calls from the US and Canada since the publication of the Sept. 2nd LifeSiteNews.com story on his case. A US organization is even seriously considering funding his legal defense.

All afternoon yesterday Boissoin sat with three homosexuals who came to him concerned about the charges. He says they "were disgusted" that his right to freedom of speech was being impinged upon and that they wanted to speak out on his behalf even though they did not necessarily agree with what he said. Stephen believes that after their lengthy discussions the three men experienced that he sincerely cares about homosexual persons.

A web page presenting documents and details on the case and background on the two principal persons has been set up on the web site of the Concerned Christians organization for which Boissoin was at one time the Executive Director. The page reproduces the original letter by Boissoin to the Red Deer advocate on June 17, 2002 (see Lund complaint) as well as subsequent letters and the detailed full complaint by University of Calgary assistant professor Darren Lund. The page also offers an opportunity for supporters to donate to Pastor Boissoin's legal expenses. See http://www.concernedchristians.ca/pages/campaigns/hrCommision/index.htm.

Concerned Christians is co-accused in the case since pastor Boissoin was in their employ at the time the letter was published and he signed it in his capacity as the central Alberta chairman of the organization. However, Boissoin told LifeSiteNews.com he believes the case against the organization is weak.

A large Free to Speak dinner is scheduled for October 29 at the Coast Plaza Hotel in Calgary. This awareness and fundraising benefit will have as speakers Calgary Bishop Fred Henry, Western Standard magazine publisher Ezra Levant, Dr. Chris Kempling and other prominent speakers. The dinner and the issue will have their own website in the next few days at http://www.freetospeak.ca. Comments on the controversy and its free speech aspects will also be able to be posted to the site.

 Dr. Kempling & the BC Court of Appeal

 

April 25, 2005

 

The final bell on “round two” has rung in the long-running match between Dr. Chris Kempling and the British Columbia College of Teachers, but it will likely be several months before the judges release their decision.  The case will decide whether Christian teachers have freedom of speech and the freedom to express their religious beliefs on their own time.  Dr. Kempling is appealing a decision of the College which suspended him for one month for writing letters to the editor objecting to the promotion of homosexuality in the public school system.  Dr. Kempling and his legal team faced off against the College of Teachers and their allies on April 21st and 22nd in Vancouver’s Court of Appeal.  The case arose out of a complaint filed with the College in July, 2000.

 

Dr. Kempling’s team consisted of William Clark of Harper Grey law firm, plus three lawyers from the intervenors:  J. Rogers for the BC Teachers’ Federation, and Kevin Boonstra (Kuehn and Company, Abbotsford) and David Brown (Stikeman Brown of Toronto), who represented the Canadian Religious Freedom Alliance. (The CRFA is comprised of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, the Catholic Civil Rights League, the Christian Legal Fellowship, and the Christian Teachers Association of BC.) 

 

The BC College of Teachers was represented by Mr. Bruce Laughton, who has handled the case from the outset.  Intervenors for the College included Elliot Myers of the BC Civil Liberties Association and Judith Anderson of the BC Public School Employers Association.  Hearing the case were Madam Justice Huddart, Mr. Justice Lowry, and Head Justice Ian Donald.  The only media in attendance was Frank Stirk of Christian Week.

 

The bulk of first day of the case was occupied by the Mr. Clark’s presentation.  He argued that Dr. Kempling’s Charter rights of freedom of speech were definitely violated by the College, and  given that no evidence of “harm” was presented, the “inference of harm” was not enough to impose discipline.  Furthermore, the one month penalty was excessive given Dr. Kempling’s unblemished teaching record, extensive community service, and numerous character references from a wide variety of supervisors and community leaders.  Mr. Clark noted that all other freedoms are an extension of freedom of expression, and that even if speech is “unpopular” it is worthy of protection in a free and democratic society.

 

David Brown had just 30 minutes to present his argument on behalf of the Canadian Religious Freedom Alliance, but he gave an outstanding oration.  He argued that, in the absence of “harm” in the school community, the speaker should receive the benefit of the doubt.  Moreover, characterizing speech as “discriminatory” is a “show-stopper”, i.e. it has the effect of shutting down debate by labeling unpopular speech as inherently harmful.  Brown posited that there should be an analysis of the difference between critical speech and discriminatory speech, which was not done in this case.  Brown noted that it is quite possible to believe in the inherent dignity of a person while concurrently holding that certain behaviours practiced by that person are immoral.  Furthermore, tolerance ought not to mean “mandated approval”.  Though his time was short, Mr. Brown captured the essential elements of the case in a brilliant presentation.

Mr. Laughton took up the bulk of the second day, presenting the College’s case.  He stated that it wasn’t necessary for anyone inside the school system to complain, nor was it necessary to call any witnesses to prove their case.    The College was well within its authority to suspend a member for speech it had determined was discriminatory—the harm could be inferred.  He also stated that it was improper to present a “freedom of religion” defense, since the College didn’t know what religion Dr. Kempling belonged to.  That was a remarkable statement considering Dr. Kempling’s writings are full of Christian references and Bible citations.

 

Elliot Myers of the BC Civil Liberties Association stated that the BCCLA agrees that the College made the right decision, but for the wrong reasons.  They felt it was improper for the College to base its decision on private memos written to a superior, private letters to elected officials, and unpublished research essays.  Their main concern was that Dr. Kempling identified himself as a teacher in his letters to the editor.  They were particularly upset by Dr. Kempling’s statement that he would refuse to be a false teacher, teaching information that was morally questionable, and that he would encourage those who were confused about their orientation to come and see him, as it could save their life.  Mr. Myers asserted that Dr. Kempling had “announced his intention to discriminate” by making these statements.  Even though no evidence was presented he actually did discriminate against anyone, the possibility he might was enough to impose the suspension.

 

The lawyers for the BC Teachers Federation and the BC Public School Employers Association made no oral submissions, and merely submitted their written briefs due to time constraints.

 

Mr. Clark is actually not too hopeful of a positive outcome in the trial, and believes it will be necessary to carry on to the Supreme Court of Canada.  It is doubly difficult at this time since Dr. Kempling is currently enduring an additional three month suspension without pay for public objecting to the Liberal’s same sex marriage legislation as a spokesman for his political party. 

 

But, as Paul urged Timothy:   ”I solemnly urge you to preach the message, to insist upon proclaiming it (whether the time is right or not), to convince, reproach, and encourage, as you teach with all patience.  The time will come when people will not listen to sound doctrine, but will follow their own desires and will collect for themselves more and more teachers who will tell them what they are itching to hear.  They will turn away from listening to the truth and give their attention to legends.  But you must keep control of yourself in all circumstances; endure suffering, do the work of a preacher of the Good News, and perform your whole duty as a servant of God.” (2 Timothy 4:1-5)

 

The children of this land deserve to be presented with balanced information on same sex issues, so that they can avoid putting their lives at risk.  Without the freedom to present the Christian perspective in a public venue like the editorial page of a local newspaper, the safety of our children, and the freedom of all Canadians is at stake.

Teacher Suspended Three Months for Defending Traditional Marriage

[Please note that the action of this local bureaucrat and the school board are quite separate from the actions of the BC College of Teachers in seeking to have Chris Kempling punished for earlier public statements.  The audacity of the local superintendent of schools in joining in the persecution of Dr. Kempling may well have been encouraged by the climate of opinion created by the successful passing of Sven Robinson's bill limiting free speech and by some of the statements coming from ministers of the federal government. --editor of this website.]

News Release:

April 4, 2005

In a decision handed down today, Quesnel School District Superintendent Ed Napier suspended school counsellor Dr. Chris Kempling for three months.  Dr. Kempling has been employed as a counsellor since 1990, and has been active in a wide variety of volunteer positions in the community.  He is also the local spokesperson of the federal Christian Heritage Party, and had written a letter to the editor of the local newspaper on behalf of his party, criticizing the Liberal government's same sex marriage legislation.  The school district did not provide a single example of disruption to the school system, or any
negative effect of the letter.  They also ignored over a dozen letters of
reference from supervisors and community members written in support of Dr. Kempling.

"It is truly unfortunate that the Quesnel School Board believes that only those
who support same sex marriage are able to comment publicly on a matter of
national importance, " stated Dr. Kempling.  "It is a sad day for freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and freedom of political affiliation. But more
significantly, I am most concerned about the young children with serious 
emotional needs, who will be deprived of their counsellor at a time when they
need help most.  Counselling, much more than teaching, involves a close
personal relationship where trust develops over time.  I'm really very worried about their well-being."

Dr. Kempling plans to fight the suspension through the grievance process, as well as through the BC Human Rights Tribunal under the category of political discrimination.  n

This is probably a good time to repeat the information found elsewhere on this 
website:
How to Contribute Financially to Chris Kempling's Legal Defence

A trust fund has been set up.  It is the "Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund."  Money contributed to this fund will help Christopher Kempling with the expenses of his legal defence.  Subsequently,  money in the fund after Chris's defence can be used to help other Christian teachers who may find themselves in a similar position.

If you would like to contribute to the trust fund, you may make a contribution at any Royal Bank branch.  The transit number is 4720. The account number is 101-030-5.

If you prefer to contribute by cheque, send your contribution to:

Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund
      c/o Jim Sagert
      798 Beaubien Ave
      Quesnel, BC V2J 1S5

Letter Chris Kempling Wrote Posted on This Website
Dr.  Chris Kempling's letter of January 8, 2005,to the Quesnel Cariboo Observer is posted immediately below: 

January 8, 2005


Editor
Quesnel Cariboo Observer
Quesnel, BC

Sir:

The letters published in the January 9, 2005 edition of the Observer regarding
same sex marriage have highlighted the arrogance of the Liberal government, to
foist a monumental change to our social fabric by changing the definition of
marriage.  The Conservatives are dithering over how to deal with matter, while
the Liberals, NDP, Bloc and Greens are all in favour.  The Christian Heritage
Party, which I represent locally, is actively working to maintain the
traditional definition of marriage (which, ironically, a majority of Liberals
including Martin voted to sustain less than six years ago).  I have personally
read editorials in gay publications which decry the push for marriage, calling
it a "straight" institution that they had little interest in. 

In Massachusetts, two-thirds of the same sex marriages are lesbians, even
though gay men outnumber lesbians two to one.  And when two researchers
(McWhirter and Madison) surveyed 236 men for their book, The Male Couple, they were unable to find a single couple who had remained faithful to one another. 
In other words, infidelity (and now adultery I suppose) is the norm, not the
exception for gay couples.  And it causes as much emotional heartache and
relationship break-ups as it does for heterosexual couples.  Is this the kind
of relationship we want to give official blessing to?

There's another problem.  Now that our liberal social activist courts
have "read" sexual orientation into the Charter, and mandated same sex
marriage, there is no logical reason to prohibit bisexuals or polyamorists
(which are both orientations) from demanding the right to marry as many people
as they want.  To forbid them would be discrimination based on sexual
orientation.  Coming soon to a court room near you.

Marriage is not a human "right".  It is an institution with obligations, for
fidelity, for raising children, and for ensuring social stability, that was
established long before government decided to get involved.  Not everyone is
currently allowed to marry (we have restrictions against those too young, blood
relatives, already married, etc.).  Furthermore, there were no discriminatory
prohibitions against same sex couples co-habiting, willing their estates to
partners and so on.  This whole affair has been orchestrated by a tiny minority
of activists with good connections, who don't even have the mandate to
represent their own social group.

We need to demand that our government allow a referendum on this radical change
to a basic social institution.  Canadians are smart enough to weigh both sides
of the argument and render a decision.  And the Christian Heritage Party will
lobby hard to help make that happen.

Chris Kempling
Quesnel

 

A Visit to New York to Speak at the United Nations

by Dr. Chris Kempling

Early in February, 2005, I received a surprising call from Anna Marie White of Focus on the Family Canada. The United Nations Commission on Human Rights was holding a Delegates' Briefing on March 4, and she was hoping I could represent Canadian Christians by speaking on the topic of religious freedom in Canada. Anna Marie explained that UN ambassadors and NGO (non-government organizations) representatives were aware of the official Canadian government position on religious freedom, but that the delegates wanted to hear from someone who had actually been subjected to persecution because of their religious beliefs. They were preparing for a major Human Rights conference to be held in Geneva in April.

I readily agreed and started making travel arrangements. I had never been to New York City and was delighted when Anna Marie stated that Focus would be happy to cover my hotel costs for an extra day if I wanted to do a little sight-seeing.

I flew on Cathay Pacific Airlines for the five hour flight and booked into the Grand Hyatt Hotel on 42nd and Lexington Streets, just a few blocks from the United Nations. On Friday morning, I met with American Focus on the Family officials, who were the hosts of the briefing, in the Helmsley Hotel. Two of the other speakers, constitutional lawyer Gerry Chipeur of Calgary, and lawyer Pers Karlson of Sweden, also attended. We then headed as a group to get our security passes in a separate building not far from the UN. Security is very tight at public facilities in New York. Thomas Jacobson, Focus on the Family's UN representative (Focus is an accredited NGO to the UN) was pulling a small rack with a couple of boxes of hand-outs. He was stopped by security, who radioed for the bomb detection unit to check his boxes.

The UN building is situated on the riverfront, with an adjacent park holding several impressive sculptures. The building itself was crowded with school tour groups, plus 6000 delegates attending a UN Women's conference. There were many delegates in their colorful national costumes walking the hallways and speaking a cornucopia of exotic languages. The Africans and South American delegates were quite flamboyant in their flowing robes and distinctive headgear.

We peeked into the General Assembly room and saw where the Canadian delegation was sitting. It looks pretty much like it does on TV. Our guide explained that simultaneous translation is done in the six official UN languages, but all UN delegates must have a working knowledge of English to be posted to the UN.

At the breakfast, Thomas Jacobsen said they were delighted to learn that they had received 98 confirmations of delegates wishing to attend the luncheon, three times what they were expecting. Furthermore, one-third were full rank ambassadors to the UN. They didn't invite the Canadian representatives, who are very strident in their support of abortion and gay rights causes. I spent the morning fine tuning my speech with Anna Marie White, Focus'  representative for Family Policy and Community Impact, and the representative from the British Focus equivalent, which is called CARE.

I was seated next to the Korean ambassador.  Sichan Siv, who just finished his term as the US ambassador to the UN, was also at the table, along with the ambassadors from Ireland, and an NGO representative from Belgium. The food was excellent and included Mesculn Salad in a basil lime vinagrette, with Sugar Cane and Cocoanut Glazed Chilean Sea Bass, Malanga Puree with Mango Salsa as the entrée. Dessert was a Chocolate Raspberry Ganache. (They gave us a souvenir menu, which is why I have all the details.)

Ambassador Siv spoke first, and related his very impressive "rags to riches" story as a Cambodian refugee who escaped the Pol Pot's killing fields in the 70's. His first job was picking apples in Connecticut, followed by a stint as a New York City cab driver. He eventually became the first Asian American refugee to join the American administration as part of President Bush Sr.'s cabinet, and finished his career as the Ambassador to the United Nations.

Gerry Chipeur spoke next, highlighting the various constitutional cases that he has been involved with at the Supreme Court level, including the Vriend and Egan cases. He told me privately that the only way to reverse Canadian policies is to defeat the Liberals in the next election.

I spoke next, outlining my particular struggles with the BC College of Teachers and my efforts to defend freedom of speech and freedom of religion for public school teachers. My talk was well received as there was a standing ovation. Janet Parshall, who hosts a national US radio talk show, invited me to speak on her show, while another woman, a Canadian lawyer working in Manhattan, said she was so upset at my treatment she wanted to return home to practice human rights law in Canada.

Pers Karlson, the Swedish lawyer, detailed the Ake Green case. Pastor Green was arrested and sentenced to one month in prison for preaching a sermon outlining what the Bible says about homosexuality. The Swedish Court of Appeal overturned that sentence, stating that the Swedish law forbidding any criticism of homosexuality went too far in penalizing pastors who perform their religious duties by explaining what the Scriptures say about behaviours deemed to be sinful. Mr. Karlson stated that Swedish embassies around the world had been flooded with protests. Nevertheless, Swedish prosecutors have now appealed the case to the Swedish Supreme Court.  Pastor Green has been invited to speak at the UN Human Rights conference in Geneva.

Overall, it was an excellent experience, and an honour to be invited to speak at the UN. The following day, I spent seven hours at the very impressive Metropolitan Museum situated in Central Park. I wasn't able to see it all, despite my best efforts, and missed the entire Egyptian wing. The medieval armor and Renaissance art was most impressive. On Sunday, I had the privilege of worshipping with the First Alliance Church congregation. This church is descended from the original Christian and Missionary Alliance Church founded in Manhattan in 1888 by A.B. Simpson (a Canadian from Prince Edward Island). They meet on the second floor of a commercial building on E26th Ave, and share space with a Messianic Jewish congregation.

Afterward, I took the bus towards Wall Street and boarded the ferry to Liberty Island. The ferry terminal is in Battery Park and houses an old fort, the original immigrant screening facility prior to the establishment of Ellis Island. It would have been the facility my great grandfather Joseph Kempling passed through in 1879. Security was intense, as all passengers were required to remove watches, belts, shoes, and jackets, plus pass through bag inspections and metal detectors. But I wanted to see the statue which is the worldwide symbol for freedom, something which we in Canada are beginning to lose a grip on. Unfortunately, it was not possible to climb up inside the interior of the statue, but it was pretty impressive just seeing it up close.

I'll close with a quote from Abraham Kuyper (1837-1920), a Dutch Christian politician who founded the Christian Democratic Party in that country: "When the principles that run against your deepest convictions begin to win the day, then the battle is your calling, and peace has become sin. You must, at the price of dearest peace, lay your convictions bare before friend and enemy with all the fire of your faith."   We no longer have the luxury of assuming that our country's leadership shares Christian principles and will uphold Godly values. As is clearly obvious, they are quite prepared to make laws which run counter to the principles upon which this country was founded, and are attempting to silence or marginalize anyone who would protest against them. Kuyper's call to arms rings true for today. But who will answer?  Ghandi said, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."  It means a commitment to action--and the time for action is now.

Dr. Chris Kempling Psy.D. R.C.C.

Quesnel, British Columbia

March 9, 2005

 

 

Religious Freedom in Canada


-by Dr. Chris Kempling Psy.D. R.C.C. 
A report prepared for  a March 4, 2005, presentation to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights Delegate Briefing, New York City  

Note by Dr. Kempling:
This speech was written for the United Nations Commission on Human Rights delegate briefing in New York City on March 4, 2005.  Due to time constraints, and to avoid overlap with other speakers, only the portion dealing with my story was delivered.

Canada is a country which prides itself on religious freedom and religious tolerance. And in many respects that is true. Citizens are free to practice their faiths according to their traditions, generally without interference from the government. And even when someone’s religious beliefs conflict with a long established Canadian tradition, great tolerance can be shown, as was the case with the first Sikh Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer permitted to wear a turban instead of the regulation hat. That constable started his career in my home town of Quesnel, and he was accepted and appreciated by the community.

Unfortunately, there are two primary areas of conflict between religious freedoms and government policy in Canada: abortion and homosexuality. A group of eight Christians, members of a group called Operation Rescue protesting abortion were arrested and sentenced to jail terms for peacefully protesting outside an abortion clinic. I met one of the men, Donald Spratt, who was incarcerated in British Columbia’s maximum security Oakalla prison for his crime--he was holding a sign outside an abortion clinic. Currently, he is awaiting trial in the BC Court of Appeal for violating the “bubble zone” of an abortion clinic. Once again, he was simply holding a sign with a Bible verse on it—Thou shalt not kill.

A man by the name of Bill Whatcott, an evangelical Christian who is a licensed practical nurse, was fined $15,000 by his professional association, for protesting against abortion on his own time, and also fined $20,000 by the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission for speaking out against homosexuality. There is a great deal of intolerance shown towards religious people who express their views in public.

In May 2002, a Catholic high school in Whitby, Ontario, was forced by the Ontario Supreme Court to allow a homosexual student, Marc Hall, to take his boyfriend to the graduation prom, even though the church-run school has strict prohibitions against condoning any kind of homosexual behaviour. And marriage commissioners, who are public employees licensed to perform civil marriages, were told by Frank Quennell, the Saskatchewan Minister of Justice, to resign if they intend to refuse to perform same sex marriages. Several have already. The new legislation currently being considered by the Canadian government provides no protection for civic officials who for reasons of conscience or religious belief will not perform a same sex marriage. Just a few months ago, a lesbian couple in the Vancouver suburb of Coquitlam arranged to rent a hall for their wedding reception from the Knights of Columbus, a Catholics men’s service group. When the group discovered that the marriage was going to be between two women, they cancelled the rental agreement, stating that their religious beliefs prevented them from accommodating a same sex wedding. Even though they paid to reprint the wedding invitations and for the rental of a new hall, the couple is still suing the group in the BC Human Rights Tribunal.

Camp Arnes is a camp operated by the Mennonite Church, located on Lake Winnipeg in Manitoba. A homosexual choir called the Rainbow Harmony Project booked the camp for a weekend retreat. The Mennonites cancelled the booking after discovering that the choir was homosexual in nature, citing their faith, their mission statement and their code of conduct conflicted with the choir’s purpose. The choir filed a discrimination suit with the Manitoba Huan Rights commission, where the decision is pending. The Winnipeg school district has now forbidden all school groups from using Camp Arnes as well as three other Christian camps.

My dictionary says that tolerance is "the disposition to adopt a liberal attitude towards the opinions or acts of others, especially those of other religions or ethnic backgrounds." One would think that tolerance would mean that social liberals would be tolerant about our religious beliefs. In the Newspeak of today, however, tolerance means everyone is obliged to take a liberal attitude towards immoral sexual behaviour, but those who practice that immoral behaviour do not have to tolerate Christian beliefs which oppose such behaviour.

Then there's the term "hate". If Christians say publicly that they disapprove of homosexual behaviour because the Bible declares it to be immoral, then that is "promoting hatred". If they quote medical statistics about the HIV infection rates of homosexual men, that is "promoting hatred". If they object to their children being indoctrinated in kindergarten class with information about homosexuality, they are hateful people. Apparently Canadians can hold religious beliefs, but if they tell anyone else in a public forum, such as a newspaper, they are "promoting hatred".

How about "homophobia". It literally means an irrational fear, even terror, of homosexual persons. A phobia is a mental illness, which can be successfully treated. In Communist Russia, dissidents were sentenced to forced treatment in psychiatric hospitals, not because they were mentally ill, but because they had wrong thoughts. I believe it is no accident that the Gay Rights term for disapproval of homosexual behaviour is a mental illness term. In all my years as a mental health professional, however, I have never encountered anyone with an irrational fear of homosexuals. But the definition of homophobia, as defined by gay activists, is the unwillingness to approve of homosexuality. Even toleration without approval is defined as homophobic. So if you have a moral objection to homosexuality, you are "mentally ill" and require re-education. One homosexual activist, John McKellar, who opposes the Gay Pride movement, calls the use of the word homophobia, “a contrived slander” against religiously conservative people. But activists realize that religious people are unlikely to change, which is why they are focusing a tremendous amount of attention on re-educating children in public schools.

Let's take a look at some of the people who have been targeted by homosexual activists.

Mr. Hugh Owen is an evangelical Christian employed as a prison guard. He placed an ad in the Saskatchewan Star Phoenix. The ad was a picture of two stick men holding hands, with a red circle with a bar across, superimposed on them. Below were four scripture references, but not the actual Bible verses. In 2001 he was convicted of a hate crime by the Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal and forced to pay his three accusers $1500 each. The judge in the Saskatchewan Court of Queen's Bench suggested that using Bible verses in a newspaper ad like this, could be construed as hate literature. So there is now legal precedent in Canada that the Holy Bible is hate literature.

Dagmar and Arnost Cepica, a Christian couple in Prince Edward Island who operated a bed and breakfast in their own home, refused to rent their bedroom to two homosexual men. In 2001, they were charged and convicted of discrimination, and rather than fight the matter in court, they closed their business down. Then there was the 1996 high profile case of professional printer Scott Brockie, who refused to print material for the Canadian Gay and Lesbian Archives, because he felt doing so would violate his religious beliefs. He was fined $5000 on February 24, 2000, and ordered to print the material anyway. Mr. Brockie took his case to the Ontario Supreme Court, then to the Ontario Court of Appeal and lost both times. The court has ordered Mr. Brockie to pay his opponents legal costs of $40,000. His total legal bills surpass $170,000. Like myself, he has set up a trust fund to help him with this burden, as he cannot afford it himself. A few years ago, Evangelist Rev. Ken Campbell of Hamilton, placed ads in a Toronto newspaper objecting to the promotion of homosexuality by governments and public schools. He had two complaints laid against him in the Ontario and BC Human Rights Tribunals by homosexual activists. He went to the tribunals, without any legal representation, and basically preached the gospel, outlining in detail what the Bible says about homosexuality. He was acquitted by both tribunals, one of the few victories Christians have had in disputes with homosexual activists.

Stephen Boissoin of Calgary, is an evangelical pastor who wrote a letter to the editor questioning the promotion of homosexuality in the public school system. A University of Calgary professor has charged him with discrimination under the Alberta Human Rights act. Last May, at a fund-raising dinner for him held in a Calgary hotel, masked homosexual thugs burst into the dining room and disrupted the meeting, chanting "Right wing bigots go away, Gay Militia is here to stay". They carried a banner saying "Liberation: Queer Invasion". Their tactics remind me of the Nazi Brownshirts of the 1930's.

Several mayors of Canadian cities have been taken to Human Rights Tribunals for refusing to declare Gay Pride Days in their cities. The most prominent one was Diane Haskett, mayor of London, Ontario. She was found guilty of discrimination in 1997 and fined $10,000. Her sentence was issued during her re-election campaign, and she stopped campaigning. She won re-election by an overwhelming margin anyway. Also targeted were the mayors of Fredricton, New Brunswick, Hamilton, Ontario,(Brad Woodard and Bob Morrow), Kelowna, BC and Oliver, BC, as well as Ernie Reine, the Chief of Police of Regina, Saskatchewan. In the year 2000 every city in British Columbia was threatened with a Human Rights Tribunal lawsuit if they did not proclaim a Gay Pride Day by a group called the Rainbow Coalition. Many cities did, but some cities stopped making proclamations of any kind just to avoid the whole controversy. The Mayor of my town, who is a devout Catholic, refused to sign the proclamation after the city council passed the Gay Pride Day resolution over his objection.

Another concern by religious Canadians who belong to unions is their inability to prevent the unions from using their union dues to support homosexual or abortion causes. Although some labour laws allow union dues to be redirected to a charity for reasons of conscience, the process is difficult and expensive, and some people chose to quit their jobs rather than hire a lawyer to make sure they don’t have to support causes they find morally offensive. My own union, the BC Teachers Federation, is an active supporter of the gay rights movement and has published their materials. One of the materials they published states that King David and Jonathan were gay lovers, and that all those who are morally opposed to homosexuality are homophobic and require re-education. Just last month the Ontario Elementary School Teachers Association publicly endorsed same sex marriage, even though many of their members are personally opposed to the concept.

Trinity Western University is a private Christian University in British Columbia which had permission to train elementary school teachers for the first four years of a five year program. As a Christian institution, they require all students to sign a pledge that they will not engage in immoral sexual conduct including homosexual behaviour, while on campus. In 1995, Trinity applied for permission to have their fifth year certified. The College of Teachers sent two committees to investigate, and both of them recommended approval of the program. But the College of Teachers overruled their own committees, and denied approval of the University's fifth year education program, arguing that the University's morality clause would produce discriminatory teachers. They presented no evidence of that position and lost all three court cases. Trinity had to spend $1.5 million on the case and only was able to recoup $168,000 from the College of Teachers. Trinity still has to prove to the College that they provide "anti-oppression pedagogy" courses to maintain certification of their education program.

Christians writing to Senator Laurier Lapierre to protest Svend Robinson's hate crime bill, Bill C-250 got this response on February 24th 2004. "You should be ashamed of yourself for reading such books" referring to the Bible. He continued, "If your god teaches you to hate and judge, then get another god. You people are sick. God should strike you dead." And in response to one writer who signed her letter, "in God's service", he said, "This letter is more in the devil's service." Senator Lapierre later apologized after receiving a storm of criticism over his hate filled comments. Just recently, Pierre Pettigrew, Canada’s minister of foreign affairs, suggested that churches had no business commenting publicly on the government’s same sex marriage law. Prior to the last election, Revenue Canada officials, the tax department, called in representatives of the Catholic and Evangelical Christian churches to warn them that they could lose their charitable status if they tried to influence their members to vote for parties which oppose same sex marriage. One of the most offensive incidents of anti-Christian discrimination was when officials from the Prime Minister’s office told two Christian ministers not to make any references to Jesus Christ, the cross, or the New Testament in their memorial prayers during the Swissair memorial in Nova Scotia in September, 1998. At first the Prime Minister’s office denied forcing the two ministers to delete references to Jesus from their prayers, but later admitted they did so because they thought that other religious leaders would be offended. Muslim and Jewish religious leaders were free to say whatever they wished, and were able to quote freely from the Torah and the Koran.

And last month, CBC Radio, the government’s broadcasting company, refused to accept a paid ad from the Maritime Christian College, because it was advertising a lecture that was going discuss family issues from a Christian perspective. No private broadcaster refused the ad.

The largest school district in the province of British Columbia in the Vancouver suburb of Surrey was sued by one of its own employees, a homosexual kindergarten teacher, so that he could use books promoting same sex families in his classroom. The Supreme Court of Canada eventually ruled that the school district’s decision to forbid use of the books was influenced by the religious beliefs of some trustees and parents, and ordered the school board to re-evaluate the books without any religious criteria. The gay kindergarten teacher was furious when the school board rejected the books again because two were out of print and the third had a grammatical error in it. But two lesbian women are now suing the school board again, because the board had allowed religious parents from Christian, Sikh and Hindu religions to explain their concerns about the books in a public meeting, and the lesbians didn’t like their statements. That case will be before the BC Human Rights Tribunal this summer.

Also before the BC Human Rights Tribunal at this time is a suit filed by another homosexual teacher. He is trying to force the British Columbia Ministry of Education to change the entire British Columbia school curriculum for all grades and subject areas to include “queer studies” and “queer role models”. If he is successful, even students in religious schools may be affected, as all private religious schools which accept government funding must prove that they are using the BC Curriculum.

Three children on Vancouver Island being home schooled, recently failed to graduate from high school, because their parents refused to teach them a small mandatory course which included sex education, on religious grounds. They regarded the course, called Personal Planning, as an attempt at social engineering and promoting immorality. The mother, Cheryl Howard of Courtenay, took the case to the BC Human Rights Tribunal but lost. Her children had straight A’s in every other course.

Then there's my case. On May 9th of 2002 I was convicted of conduct unbecoming a member of the BC College of Teachers. The reason was because I expressed my opinion in my local newspaper. Between April 1997 and July, 2000, I wrote one freelance column and six letters to the editor of my town’s newspaper, which questioned the wisdom of promoting the homosexual agenda. I provided factual information on rates of promiscuity and disease infection which had been previously published in scholarly journals. I said that many religions consider homosexuality to be immoral, that it may be caused by negative psycho-social influences, and that it was nothing to be applauded. I said that I would refuse to be a false teacher, compromising my faith to teach information which the Bible clearly says is immoral. I said this not in my classroom, or my staff room, but on the editorial pages of my local newspaper. I had thought that the editorial page was a place where all Canadians have the right to express their points of view, whether other people like them or not. I highly value the freedom of the press, and all points of view should be represented in our newspapers, including those opposed to ours. But a man by the name of Hayward Broun once said, "Everyone favours free speech in the slack moments when no axes are being ground.” And how true that is.

I appealed the conviction to the BC Supreme Court, but lost in February of last year. If this verdict is upheld by the courts, teachers will not be able to write privately to their own supervisors to question a new curriculum resource, or write privately their own elected officials on a matter of public policy, nor will they able to address the topic of homosexuality in post graduate research papers. I was disciplined for doing all of these things. This is an unacceptable restriction of freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and freedom of intellectual expression.

The College presented no complaints about what I had written publicly from teachers, none from students, none from parents, and most importantly, none from any member of the gay community. The people who did disagree with me did so by writing their own letters to the editor, and I fully support their right to do that.

The Catholic Civil Rights League, the Christian Legal Fellowship, the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, The Christian Teachers Association have banded together to form the Canadian Religion Freedom Alliance to assist in my defence. My union is also supporting me. The case will be heard on April 21 and 22, this year. Joining the College of Teachers in opposing me is the BC Civil Liberties Association, who feel I should be suspended indefinitely unless I publicly recant, and the BC Public School Employers Association.

My school district supervisors have also decided to silence me. They have disciplined me repeatedly for speaking out, including for advertising my intention to offer orientation change therapy services through my private practice. On March 31, I must appear before a formal hearing of the Quesnel School Board to explain why I publicly criticized the government’s same sex marriage legislation. I am facing a lengthy suspension without pay, even though not one homosexual person has complained about what I wrote. I’ve filed a Human Rights complaint against the school district for religious discrimination.

I am a Christian seven days a week, both on the job and off the job, and I will not compromise my faith to teach falsehoods to children.

As servants of the Most High God, it is our duty to speak up courageously for what is right. I do not know what may become of me, of my career. My lawyer has told me that my legal costs could reach a half a million dollars. I have a trust fund called The Christian Public School Teachers’ Legal Defense Fund, but I do not currently have adequate funds to defend myself. I am trusting in God to help my defense.

Canada does have religious freedom, but that freedom is under assault. Thank you for inviting me to speak, and may God bless you all.


Dr. Chris Kempling Psy.D. R.C.C. Registered Clinical Counsellor 250-983-3949 Quesnel, BC V2J 5R5 Kempling@telus.net

 



A Message from Chris Kempling--February 4, 2004

Friends: 

It is a black day for religious freedom in Canada.  Yesterday, Justice Ronald Holmes of the BC Supreme Court ruled that  the BC College of Teachers was correct in suspending me for one month for letters to the editor written on my own time in my off the job capacity.  He stated that my comments were discriminatory and could reasonably cause disruption to the school system.  He implied that homosexual students would be unwilling to speak to me in my role as a school counsellor.  Justice Holmes asserted that my published comments reduced my credibility as a teacher in the eyes of students, and the public.


There was no evidence presented that this was true.  No evidence of a
disrupted school environment was found.  There were no complaints from students, parents, or my supervisors.  All of my former administrators wrote letters stating that my public comments had no discernible impact on the 
operation of the school. In fact, three former students interviewed by the 
CBC at the University of British Columbia said they weren't even aware that there was a controversy at that time.  Furthermore, Justice Holmes ignored the evidence before him that homosexual students received impartial service from me.  In fact, a prominent homosexual interviewed by College investigators offered no opinion that what I had written pubicly was upsetting to homosexual people. Justice Holmes ignored evidence that my credibility as a teacher and community leader were not impaired, such as the fact that I was appointed to be Chair of the Community Health Council by the Minister of Health during this period, the highest non-elected appointment in our city, with responsibility for over 500 employees and a $22 million budget.

What does this mean?  It means that teachers who happen to be Christians
or who belong to other religions proscribing homosexuality may not comment
publicly on this issue.  It means that disciplinary bodies do not need to provide
any evidence of impairment or harm at a professional's workplace if they
exercise their right to free speech in their off the job capacity.  Inference of
harm is sufficient to remove a teacher from his job.  It is a serious blow to
freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

I intend to appeal this ruling to the BC Court of Appeal.  But I cannot
do this alone as the College of Teachers has unlimited funds at their disposal.
Most importantly, I need your prayers as I continue this fight for religious
freedom and freedom of speech.  Donations can be made to the 
Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defence Fund 
c/o Mr. Jim Sagert, Trustee 
798 Beaubien Ave, 
Quesnel, BC  V2J 1A6, 
or at any branch of the Royal Bank, Transit #4720, Account #101-030-5.

I thank you for those who have already donated or sent messages of
support and encouragement.  Believe me, they have been much appreciated as it has been quite hard on my family in the past four years.  But I am determined to
see this through.  I am a Christian first and a teacher second, and I will
not compromise my faith or keep silent about what I believe.

Chris Kempling
Quesnel, BC
Kempling@telus.net




A Message from Chris Kempling--December 7, 2003


BCPTL Friends & Colleagues:

Last month I attended the annual convention of the National Association
for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality in Salt Lake City, Utah, as one of
the speakers.  It was an excellent convention, with numerous presentations
by various experts in their fields.  While some therapists were
representing various faith traditions, some were operating strictly as secular
service providers.  There were, however, representatives from JONAH (the
orientation change program for Jews), Evergreen (Mormons), Courage (Catholics), and Exodus North American (Evangelicals).  Dr. Kristl vonHoldt and a colleague travelled all the way from Germany to attend.  They represent the German Institute for Youth and Society, and have requested to publish my NARTH speech, as well as my essay Sexual Orientation Curriculum:  Implications for Educators, in their organization's journal (translated by Dr. vonHoldt).

Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, president of NARTH, gave the keynote speech,
outlining his therapeutic approach to orientation change treatment.  He advised us
that this is difficult work for clients to do, and there needs to be strong
motivation for change.  He also stated that he had had only one successful case
where the client was a teenager.  Apparently, the ideal age for this type of
therapy is early 20's to early 30's.  Success rates generally fall into
"thirds"--one-third completely revert to heterosexuality, one-third make significant changes in their behaviours, but still struggle with temptation and fantasies, while another third tend to drop out of therapy.

One of the reasons that psychology was so unsuccessful in treating
homosexuality in the early years was the way psychoanalytic therapists
were trained (to be emotionally detached from their clients).  Nicolosi says
that it is essential for men seeking orientation change to connect emotionally
with a salient heterosexual man without sexual involvement.  In fact, he
says he rarely talks about sex with his clients--the focus on is on changing
cognitions and behaviours, and dealing honestly with emotions,
especially their physiological component.

Another important speech was given by Dr. Christopher Rosik, based on an
article on unwanted same sex attraction published in the Journal of
Marital and Family Therapy.  Dr. Rosik outlined why social conservatives and social liberals are frequently at odds in areas of morality. Social liberals
tend to adhere to an Ethic of Autonomy, where personal behaviours which do not
"harm" others are accepted, even affirmed.  Social conservatives tend to adhere
to a different set of ethics:  the Ethics of Community (e.g. community
values, such as retention of the historical definitions of marriage), and the Ethics
of Divinity, where there is a belief in an absolute standard of conduct, as
revealed in divinely inspired texts.  It certainly explains why we
simply cannot seem to have rational discussions with those in the EOA camp.

In any event it was an outstanding conference, and as a result of the
training I received there I have decided to begin offering orientation change
therapy as part of my private counselling practice here in Quesnel.
Like all of you, I am anxiously awaiting Justice Ronald Holmes' judgment
in my case.  I appreciate of all the support you have provided me, in terms of
prayers, notes of encouragement, and financial donations in the past
year.  May God bless you richly this Christmas and in the New Year to come.

Chris Kempling
Quesnel, BC

A Message Dated August 2, 2003, from Chris Kempling Regarding His BC Supreme Court Hearing

 
Friends at BC Parents and Teachers for Life:

On July 28th, I finally got my day in BC Supreme Court, and it lasted for two and a half days.  There were two changes in judges, the last one being handwritten in at the last minute (Justice Holmes).  My lawyer, William Clark
of Harper Grey Easton produced a 65 page defense with 191 points.  This did not
include the various legal citations which filled several three inch thick volumes.  Mr Clark argued that the standard for disciplining a member for off the job conduct is the Ross case.  This was an anti-Semitic teacher in New Brunswick who published numerous anti-Jewish pamphlets and books.  The court found that there was a "poisoned environment" in the school that could be attributed to Mr. Ross' off the job conduct.  The College admitted they had found no evidence of a poisoned environment in my case.  Therefore, Mr. Clark argued, my freedom of speech should not be infringed if no harm could be demonstrated.  He read extensively from my letters of reference from supervisors and community leaders, and pointed out that the Supreme Court in the Trinity case had stated that the College is not really qualified to determine competing Charter human rights issues outside of the school system.  He also pointed out that holding a religious belief and expressing it, is not really "conduct" and that there was no evidence that I conducted myself in a discriminatory way towards any homosexual individual.  He did an excellent job and I was quite pleased.
Mr. Elliot Meyers, lawyer for the BC Civil Liberties Association went next, and presented arguments in support of the College's position.  To be fair, they were critical of the college for citing me for conduct unbecoming for private letters to my superiors and city officials, and for my unpublished research essays.  They noted that I had sent these documents in after the fact, obviously in an attempt to defend myself, and it was "Kafkaesque" that the College added these to my list of offensive writings. Nevertheless, the BCCLA has taken the position that two sentences were offensive and for that reason they support the College's position.  One was my statement that I would refuse to be a false teacher, teaching information that violated my religious convictions, and the other, that students who were confused about their orientation should see me because I could offer them therapeutic assistance that could steer them towards heterosexuality (I had
implied that homosexual behaviours were risky and life threatening according to published research).  They stated that by saying these two sentences I had "announced my intention to discriminate in schools if given the chance."  They added, "All he may not do, in the BCCLA's submission, is continue to work
as a teacher and counsellor in the school system while his public position is
maintained." [BCCLA argument, page 19]   In other words, the BCCLA apparently
believes that teachers who publicly express a religious belief about homosexuality, or who believe orientation can be changed through therapy, should be prevented from working in the public school system, or suspended indefinitely until they recant.  I'll let you draw your own conclusions about what that means for civil liberties for Christian teachers in the public school system.  
Mr. Laughton, lawyer for the College, argued that my writings were entirely derogatory and discriminatory, and the College had the right to discipline me.   He implied that the five supervisors who wrote letters of reference for me did not know what they were talking about, that he was unsure which religion I belonged to, and that I had never asked the College to explain what specifically was problematic about my writings (I did, six times, but they never did tell me).  Ironically, he also cited the Ross and Trinity cases in his presentation.  In rebuttal, my lawyer pointed out that he was very selective in his quotes and omitted significant paragraphs which actually supported my position. Justice Holmes was very inscrutable and gave no indication whatsoever which way he was leaning.  He reserved his decision, and my lawyer told me to expect a 4-5 month wait. Obviously, either side has the right of appeal, so this matter may not be resolved for a long, long time.
I very much appreciated the support of those BCPTL members who sat with me in court for the trial, as well as those who couldn't attend but were generous with their prayers.  Please pray for wisdom for Justice Holmes as he deliberates.  Thank you again for all your support through this long ordeal.
Chris Kempling
Quesnel, BC




Another Teacher Who Was in Trouble with the British Columbia College of Teachers for Opposing the Pro-Homosexuality Program
Correspondence:  a Letter from Frank Wagner

[The following letter was received October 6th, 2003.  Mr. Wagner had been unable to get any in the mainstream media to publish the letter.  We think it should be published.  You may not agree with all of Frank Wagner's statements, but we hope you agree that a teacher should not be disciplined for passing on information or opinions to his colleagues.]

Ron Gray, the leader of Canada's Christian Heritage 
Party is quoted as saying "Speak now or forever wear
your chains in silence."

 These words were running through my mind and made me 
realize that this prophetic statement applies to me 
here and now.

 I'm therefore stating publicly my opposition to bill 
C-250, Mr. Svend Robinson's "hate crime" bill, which 
was approved by Canada's Parliament and has now moved 
to the Senate for consideration.

 This bill is not in the best interests of homosexuals 
or anyone else. It will not protect anyone but will 
silence those of us who want to extend a helping hand
to the people addicted to homosexual sex.

 Another effect of this bill, if it becomes law, will 
be to suppress the knowledge of the destructive 
consequences of homosexual sex. This suppression is 
already taking place, and indeed in an organized and 
systematic manner. I speak from personal experience.

 I teach in a large secondary school which has a club 
called "gay-straight alliance". One morning, about two 
years ago I gave a colleague a personally addressed 
copy of an article called "Medical Consequences of 
Homosexual Behaviour". He inadvertently left it in a 
room where a secretary found it and took it to the 
principal, who, before noon on the same day, faxed it
to the school board.

 I was called to 3 discipline meetings, told that 
distributing such material was inappropriate and was 
directed to not, under any circumstances, distribute 
this article in the school at which I teach. Failure 
to comply would result in disciplinary action and 
possible termination of employment. I was asked to 
repent. I refused and was told that what mattered 
wasn't whether I was right or wrong but whether I did 
what I was told.

 The school board then reported me to the BC College of 
Teachers (BCCT), which "investigating" my conduct, and 
then hired a National law firm, which has offices in 
Vancouver, Calgary and Yellowknife, to prosecute me 
for "conduct unbecoming a member".

 My union, the BC Teachers' Federation, is willing to 
pay $145 per hour towards my legal fees. I have 2 
quotes from lawyers who may be interested in defending 
me. One is $300 per hour and the other is $175 per 
hour.

 In the mean time, teachers who support the 
"gay-straight alliance" club use the student and 
teacher bulletins and the school's public address 
system, as well as numerous posters and rainbow 
stickers to promote a particular view of 
homosexuality.

 On April 16 of this year Chris Kempling, a Quesnel BC 
teacher and counsellor, was found guilty by the BCCT 
of "conduct unbecoming a member" for drawing public 
attention to the misinformation which was being 
imparted to teachers and students. Did  the BCCT thank 
him for pointing out the errors and correct them, as 
would have  been pedagogically sound? No, the college 
attempted to suppress what he said and then suspended 
his teaching license.

 The pressure to submit to the homosexual agenda is 
already very opressive.  Bill C-250 would make it 
intolerable.

 At this point I want to put this matter into 
historical context as seen from the point of view of 
relevant personal experience. I lived in National 
Socialist occupied Czechoslovakia and then, just 
before the end of World War II, in Germany

 Arnold Toynbee, the noted British historian said that 
after every war the victors acquire the values of the vanquished. 
Canada has certainly gone a long way in adopting the values of National
Socialist Germany.

 Please let me explain.

 Among the significant steps in the rise to power of 
Germany's National Socialism were these:  
1) the growth of a powerful women's "liberation" 
movement
2) a massive increase in abortions 
3) the seizing of a disproportionate amount of power 
by homosexuals 
4) the rise to power of a ruling elite 
5) the extermination of 300 000 handicapped Germans 
6) the extermination of 12 000 0000 people who failed 
to comply with the will of the ruling elite.

 Canadians have completed steps 1, 2 and 3.

 Step 4 has 4 parts: 
a) the dethronement of God
b) the replacement of God by the individual will 
c) the rise of political correctness and 
d) the use of political correctness to replace the individual will
by the will of the ruling elite.

 Steps 5 and 6 are the logical consequence of steps 1
to 4 and, unless people repent, will result in the 
physical destruction of many of those who are deemed 
to be politically incorrect.

 I therefore entreat all of us who do not wish to wear 
our chains in silence to speak up. For starters, 
please contact our senators and urge them to vote 
against Mr. Robinson's bill.

For God, Canada, life and justice,

 Frank Wagner
[E-mail:  fwagner4@yahoo.ca


BCPTL Sends Letter on May 3, 2003, 
Asking for the Abolition of the British Columbia College of Teachers
(Government replies to this letter follow it.)

 

[The following is the text of a letter signed and sent by fax on May 3, 2003, to the Victoria and constituency offices of the Hon. Christy Clark, Minister of Education, and to the constituency office of the Hon. Gordon Campbell, Premier of British Columbia.  The letter was also sent by e-mail on May 3rd to both the Minister of Education and the Premier.]
 
 

April 30, 2003

Hon. Christy Clark, Minister of Education and Deputy Premier
Room 248, Parliament Buildings
Victoria, B. C. V8V 1X4

Dear Ms. Clark:

On July 31, 2002, we sent you a letter by both facsimile transmission and e-mail regarding the abuse of power by the British Columbia College of Teachers. In the same letter, we also wrote about the infringements of teachers? rights by personnel employed by local school boards. We sent a copy of this letter to Premier Gordon Campbell. In the intervening months we have had no reply to our letter--not so much as an acknowledgement.

Since writing that letter, in which we stated the urgent nature of the matters we drew to your attention, we in British Columbia Teachers for Life have learned yet more about the high-handed methods used by the British Columbia College of Teachers; and, so far as we know, nothing has changed regarding the infringement of individual teachers' freedom by local authorities. We need to have an immediate assurance that you and your government have some concern about the matters we raised and are prepared to do something about them. We are not alone in our concerns.

Since we wrote to you, the BC College of Teachers has pronounced a penalty of a one-month suspension on Quesnel school counsellor and teacher Chris Kempling for his exercise of free speech. The BCCT has chosen not to publish a code of ethics for teachers, even though they have been put in charge of the discipline of public school teachers. Teachers are left in the position of not knowing what actions the BCCT will judge worthy of penalty. The effect is to increase the College's power through the fear generated by uncertainty. Teachers are left to the whims of this autocratic body with no protection except the potentially very expensive one of judicial appeal. Apparently, according to one account, the College decided not to publish a code of ethics for fear of conflicts with the British Columbia Teachers? Federation.

The BC College of Teachers has shown itself to be responsible to no one--unless you count its apparent sense of responsibility to the BC Teachers? Federation. On behalf of British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life, we now request that the British Columbia College of Teachers be abolished.

We also request that teachers be protected from the infringement of their essential liberties by school-board personnel. As we stated in our letter sent in July of 2002, "Teachers . . .have been called before committees of school board personnel and, while told to keep the proceedings secret, have been led to expect that they were in danger of discipline for expressing their views either outside the school or to other teachers. Teachers called before committees that have the power to require them to give an account of their actions should not be required or expected to keep proceedings against them secret. A teacher should be able to freely seek advice and choose his or her own advocate (either a lawyer or otherwise), not necessarily a BC Teachers, Federation or local teachers' union representative. Proper records should be made of any proceedings of such committees and shared with all parties involved."

We would like to point out that the current situation makes for a climate of secrecy in the public-school system. Parents are ill-served when their children's teachers are intimidated to the extent that they are afraid to criticize a program instituted by the teachers' union. Mr. Kempling is a rare example of a teacher who has been willing to critique such a program publicly. If the College is allowed to continue to intimidate teachers, voices will be silenced which would otherwise have been raised to express individual opinions not sanctioned by their union.

We have waited eight months for a reply to our previous expression of concerns. We are ready to ask others to join us in demanding that the BC College of Teachers be abolished, and that teachers' basic rights be protected.

Many people voted for provincial Liberal candidates, hoping that abuses such as the BCCT's acting as an instrument of the BCTF's socio-political agenda would be ended. We hope for an immediate response from you to indicate that your government is willing to take action to end such abuse.

Sincerely,

 

Edward S. Hewlett, President
Bernard McCabe, Vice-President
On behalf of British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life

Copy to:
Premier Gordon Campbell

 

The following is the text of a message, dated May 9th, 2003, received from Premier Campbell:

Dear Mr. Hewlett:

Thank you for your email addressed to the Honourable Christy Clark,
Minister of Education, regarding Mr. Christopher Kempling and the British Columbia
 College of Teachers (BCCT).

As you may know, the BCCT is a professional regulatory body responsible
for licensing teachers to work in British Columbia.  I understand that the
BCCT  has found Mr. Kempling guilty of conduct unbecoming a member of the BCCT
and  has suspended him for one month without pay.

 I will forward your correspondence to Minister Clark to ensure that she is
 aware of your concerns.  I can assure you that she will give your comments
 every consideration.

 Sincerely,

 Gordon Campbell
 Premier

The following is the text of a message of June 23, 2003, from Peter H. Owen, Director,  Governance, Legislation and Independent Education Branch:


Subject: Reply to your email dated May 3, 2003


 June 23, 2003


 Our Ref: 82550


 Edward S. Hewlett, President
 British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life
 2397 King George Hwy
 Surrey BC  V4A 9N3
 Email:  ted@bcptl.org

Dear Mr. Hewlett:

Thank you for your email dated May 3, 2003, addressed to the Honourable
Christy Clark, Minister of Education, regarding the British Columbia
College of Teachers (BCCT).  The Minister has asked me to reply on her behalf.

In your correspondence, you note that you feel the BCCT is "abusing" its
powers.  As you may know, the governance structure of the Council of the
College of Teachers has recently been changed to provide more balance.
The Teaching Profession Act was amended to change the make-up of the Council to provide for greater public participation.  Parents, who were not
previously represented, now also have a voice.

Changes in the legislation also provide parents a formal avenue through
which to notify the College of any professional misconduct of a member.

You request that the BCCT be eliminated.  Government has no plans at this  time to abolish the BCCT.  It is hoped that the recent changes implemented will enable the College to function more efficiently and with broader input from the public.

Thank you for sharing your concerns with government.

Sincerely yours,


Peter H. Owen
Director
Governance, Legislation and
    Independent Education Branch


A Letter from Chris Kempling to His Supporters
(Received June 20, 2003)

Dear Friends: 

The past few months have been quite a roller coaster.  Many of you saw the CBC
documentary on my case in February.  My Director of Instruction, Mr. Gary Graf,  also saw it and began disciplinary proceedings against me.  He has now given me a letter of direction stating that I am not to write anything on the
 
topic of homosexuality unless it relates to my legal case.  I protested that
this would prevent me from writing a sermon, a speech, emails to friends, a
private essay, or even a personal journal!  I had already agreed over two years ago not to contribute any further letters to the local newspaper on the topic, as a gesture of goodwill.  He has not withdrawn this directive, however. 

A second directive I was given was that I am forbidden to express my opinion on
the topic of homosexuality in any school in the district, or in the community in a school related function.  I protested that this directive would prevent me from expressing my concerns to a meeting of the School Board, or from having a 
private conversation in my counselling office with a student or parent who
wanted to know my opinion. I have never used my classroom position to promote my personal views, and do not intend to start as I view it as unethical.

These directives were despite the fact that there was not a single complaint
from the public over the CBC broadcast, and that no parent, student, administrator or teaching colleague had filed any complaint.  I see this attempt to muzzle me as a serious infringement of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.  Frankly, I have found this situation much more stressful than my
dispute with the College of Teachers.  If there is anyone who is willing to
support me on this "second front", you may address letters to Mr. Ed Napier, Superintendent of Schools SD#28(Quesnel), 401 North Star Rd, Quesnel, BC V2J 5K2 or ednapier@sd28.bc.ca.

A description of my case has now been published in the College of
Teachers "Report to Members", which is sent to all 53,000 teachers and
administrators in the province.  Although the case report states that my
writings caused "distress and division" among my teaching colleagues,
not one of them fulfilled their ethical obligations to notify me in writing that they were going to file a negative report with the College.  I have long given up expecting to be dealt with in an ethical way by my BCTF colleagues, but it still troubles me greatly.

The Supreme Court case is still a go, as far as I know, on July 28th and 29th
in Vancouver.  I am uncertain how the total replacement of the College will affect my case, but until I hear otherwise, I will be there with "bells on"!

On May 12, I was invited to speak at a public meeting in Quesnel on my case. Approximately 40 people attended including our former mayor and his wife.  Over
$2500 was dontated to the trust fund (which now stands at about $30,000). Organizer Ken Campbell surprised me with a plaque from his group, Canada's Civilized Majority, declaring me Canada's "Citizen of the Year".  It was quite
 
an honour (and greatly impressed my son). Although there was a reporter from
the local paper present, who took copious notes and photographs during my speech, not a word of this event was printed. I guess only "bad news" is news.

This August 9th, I have been invited to speak in Tumbler Ridge at CCM's Second
Annual Wilderness Family Conference, where the theme is "liberating Canadian Public Schooling and Public Life from the tyranny of secular humanism".  I am not sure if I will be subject to discipline from my employer for writing a speech for this event, but nothing surprises me anymore.

I very much appreciate the support I have received from so many of you, in
letters, donations and words of encouragement.  I seem to be "accumulating more enemies" though, so I still need your help and your prayers.  I do not see an end in sight any time soon, but it is my strong belief that being faithful is more important than being "successful", so I will stay the course no matter what the outcome.

Despite some press reports, I have not quit my job (though I was looking for a
time), and did not have to serve my one month's suspension [yet].  I intend to be in Quesnel at my post, and in the trenches, for the foreseeable future.  If any of you can make it to BC Supreme Court on July 28 or 29th, I would be happy
to meet with you in person.  God bless you all.

Chris Kempling
Quesnel
Psalm 3


 

BCCT Sets Penalty for Chris Kempling 


In a message of April 14, 2003, Chris Kempling writes:
 "The College has decided that my penalty is to be one month's suspension  (the original recommendation of their own committee in November, but rejected  by them in January).  It is to commence on May 1st unless they agree to suspend  it until after the court renders its decision." [Chris has appealed the original BCCT decision--that he was guilty of "conduct unbecoming a member of the BCCT-- to the British Columbia Supreme Court]

A Message from Chris Kempling--April 5, 2003

 

Fellow BCPTL Members and Supporters: 

On April 1st, I met with 17 members of the College of Teachers at their office
in Vancouver.  The purpose was to present arguments why a 5 month suspension
was a totally unreasonable sentence.  My lawyer, William Clark, made an
excellent presentation, pointing out that suspension was unwarranted as there
was no evidence of harm or controversy at the school.  He pointed out that the
College had given out letters of reprimand only, for criminal offenses such as
uttering threats, sexually inappropriate conduct towards a student, assault,
and theft, and that my only offense was writing letters to the editor. He also
argued that it was very alarming for the College to discipline a member for
writing a private letter to a city counsellor on a matter of public policy.

The College's lawyer, Bruce Laughton, basically stated I was an incorrigable
bigot, that all my reference letters from my supervisors and community leaders,
including the current and former mayors, the MLA, the CEO of the Hospital, and
the president of the Quesnel Ministerial Association, etc., were not to be
taken seriously, that I wasn't a professional counsellor, and that I had
learned nothing from these experiences.  Actually, since they didn't ask me any
questions at all (and didn't in November either), I've never had a chance to
explain what I've learned.  The most ironic thing was seeing them swear their
court reporter on the Holy Bible, which I have been judged guilty of conducting
unbecoming a member for quoting from.  The word hyprocritical comes to mind.
They said they would let me know later that day.  I am still waiting to hear
(it's now April 5th) what my sentence is to be.

Both lawyers have asked for more time to prepare, so the BC Supreme Court
appeal will happen some time in May now (one can only hope).  I continue to
trust in God for my deliverance and welcome your prayers and material support.
Chris Kempling


 

British Columbia Teachers' Federation Fails to Stand Up for Teachers' 
 Freedom of Speech
(an opinion piece by Ted Hewlett)

The BC Teachers' Federation is far from  reluctant to comment on issues of what it calls "social justice."  (An example of its taking sides on a public issue was its Internet "School Staff Alert" of March 13  entitled "Say NO to war," advertising a peace vigil at the U.S. Consulate.)

But when it comes to defending the its members' rights to speak out as individuals, the BCTF  can be conspicuous by its silence, if those  members are not supporting the BCTF line.  At the BCTF Annual General Meeting which was held the week of March 15th, 2003, Resolution 143 was  brought forward to the effect that the BCTF should affirm the right of its members to the lawful public expression of views and encourage their active participation in public debate on important issues as Canadian citizens.  Instead of unanimously adopting the resolution, delegates to the AGM were  suspicious of what might have been thought an uncontroversial endorsement of free speech.  Might not such a resolution mean that people could make homophobic comments? someone suggested.  And the skittish delegates referred the dangerous resolution to the BCTF's "judicial council."   

No doubt delegates were aware of Chris Kempling's actions in daring to question the pro-homosexuality program of the BCTF.  But rather than endorse the rights of such teachers as he to speak out in disagreement with their union,   they chose to shelve the resolution, refusing uphold the most basic right of free speech for their fellow-members.

Those members who promoted the freedom of speech resolution are to be commended for keeping the issue of freedom of speech  for teachers alive.  But once again, the majority of delegates to the Annual General Meeting showed their willingness to toe the ideological line of the radical leaders of their teachers' union.

[The foregoing analysis represents the personal opinion of the editor.  The reference to the BCTF "Say NO to War" message is intended to show BCTF involvement in public issues.  The writer does not intend the reference to imply any statement about the justice or otherwise of the Second Gulf War.]

 

 

Catholic Civil Rights League Letter to The Province

The following letter from the Catholic Civil Rights League to The Province is reproduced with permission.  We think it makes a very good point.

5 December, 2002

The Editor,
The Province

Dear Sir/Madam:

There is no evidence that Chris Kempling brought his opinions about homosexuality into the classroom, yet the BC College of Teachers intends to punish him for participating in public discussion of a controversial topic (Teacher faces ban over views on gays, 1 December, 2002).

Well, not just for participating, as it turns out. Gay and Lesbian Educators of BC have been participating in public discourse on the topic for years, yet not one of its members has been charged by the College for having done so. In fact, GALEBC and its supporters have been trying to do precisely what Mr. Kempling has not done: force their opinions about homosexual lifestyles into the classroom, even against the objections of parents.

In other words, the College is willing to allow pro-homosexual advocacy inside the classroom, but will not tolerate opposition to this agenda even outside. Its partisan attempt to silence Mr. Kempling is an affront to freedom-loving people and an abuse of its powers of self-governance.

Sincerely,

Sean Murphy, Director
Western Region
7120 Tofino St.,
Powell River,
British Columbia,
Canada V8A 1G3
E-mail: buncrana@prcn.org
Tel: 604-485-9765

Vancouver  Province Runs  Kempling Article 
and Invites Responses on the Issue.

The Sunday Province (December 1, 2002, P. A27) ran a full-page article on Chris Kempling.  The main headline is "Teacher faces ban over views on gays" and the subheading reads: "There's no evidence Chris Kempling ever exposed students to his opinions on gays, but the College of Teachers may suspend him anyway--and his union isn't supporting him."  It's a pretty positive and accurate article, and The Province is inviting responses on the issue.

The article begins, "High-school counsellor Chris Kempling is fighting alone for the rights of teachers to express their personal opinions outside the classroom."  Well, that's what he's fighting for, all right, among other things.  But he is not alone, and we hope that he will continue to be supported by those who value freedom of speech and of religion.

In the article, Wendy McLellan, Education Reporter for The Province, writes (very accurately), "Although an investigation found no evidence that Kempling brought his opinions into the classroom or pushed his views on students, the college is considering suspending his teaching licence for three months."  Yes, that is what the BC College of Teachers argued for before the BCCT panel last month (November 18, 2002), and as far as we know that is what the college is still considering.

The Province, in an attention-getting box within the article asked "What do you think?" and said, "Give us your comments by phone at (604) 605-2029, email at provletters@pacpress.southam.ca  or fax at (604) 605-2099.  . . . .."   Seventeen letters appeared, all but one in favour at least of Chris Kempling's right to speak out. n

Another Teacher Victimized for Expressing His Views

As we have indicated previously, Chris Kempling is not the only teacher whose rights to freedom of speech have been challenged.  For the protection of the teacher involved, we have withheld his name and have not given the details of his victimization, since his case has not been made public by the authorities involved, who may take further action.


Note from the author of the submission which follows:
"I sent the submission which follows to the clerk of
the committee studying Bill C-250 . . . ."

I have read Mr. Svend Robinson's Bill C-250 which
seeks to replace subsection 318 (4) of the CRIMINAL
CODE by the following:

(4) In this section "identifiable group" means any
section of the public distinguished by colour, race,
religion, ethnic origin or "sexual orientation".

According to a summary authorized by the Speaker of
the House of Commons the enactment of this bill would
expand the definition of "identifiable group" relating
to the area of hate propaganda in the CRIMINAL CODE to
include any section of the public distinguished by
sexual orientation.

I find this proposed legislation disturbing and
ominous.

To be specific:
 
1) This proposed legislation further accentuates the
division of Canadians into three classes of people
a)those with special status, special privilege and
special legal protection b) ordinary citizens and c)
those without legal protection, notably children
conceived but not yet born.

2) Without the "benefit" of this bill, Chris Kempling,
a Quesnel (B.C.) teacher and counsellor, was found
"guilty" by the BC College of Teachers of "conduct
unbecoming a member of the BC College of Teachers" for
drawing public attention to the pro homosexuality
indoctrination of public school children.

3) Without the "benefit" of this bill I have been
victimized by employees of the Vancouver School Board
for attempting to make the promoters of "gay-straight
alliance" clubs aware of some of the medical
consequences of homosexual behaviour.

4) There was practically no resistance to Bill C-250
when it came up in Parliament.

5) The enactment of this bill would drive us back in
time to pre-Magna Carta days. 

Members of the committee studying Bill C-250, please
recommend that parliament defeat this bill.

for justice,  [We have withheld the name, which was included in the submission.]

British Columbia School Counsellor 
Found “Guilty”
after Objecting to Pro-Homosexuality Agenda

Speak out publicly against the program of pro-homosexuality indoctrination being conducted by the British Columbia Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) and you risk your job and your professional reputation. That seems to be the message sent to teachers by the action of the British Columbia College of Teachers against Chris Kempling, Kempling, a public-school counsellor who holds two degrees in counselling, has been found “guilty” for merely speaking out against aspects of the program launched by the BCTF. The action of the BC College of Teachers comes in the wake of actions against other teachers by board personnel at the local level. Teachers who have opposed the pro-homosexuality agenda have been called in to secret meetings where their actions have been questioned in ways that were highly intimidating.

Chris, who is a Christian, has written an appeal to fellow-Christians, which we reproduce here. The appeal is one which not only Christians, but all people of faith, and indeed all who believe in liberty of speech and of religion, ought to respond to. At the close of this article are suggestions about what you can do to support Chris in his courageous stand on behalf of young people.

Chris Kempling's Appeal:
Fellow Believers:
    In May of this year I was declared guilty of conduct unbecoming a member of the BC College of Teachers.   My crime: writing letters to the editor objecting to the promotion of the homosexual agenda in the public school system as well as for writing unpublished research essays, and private letters to my supervisors and elected officials. The College declared that "everything that you have written in its entirety is derogatory and discriminatory," even though some information was merely quoting previously published research data, or was even speaking supportively of measures to decrease maltreatment of the gay minority. The BC Human Rights Commission does not accept private correspondence as evidence of discrimination, but obviously the College has a different point of view. I have been compared to two other teachers who were members of white supremacy hate groups who were disciplined by their employers or human rights tribunals. Oddly enough,  no one in the gay community has complained about what I wrote or filed a  human rights complaint. In fact, I have yet to meet a gay person I don't like, and get along fine with all of them with whom I am acquainted.   In other words, the College is continuing to display its bias against Christian teachers as they did in the Trinity dispute, by sanctioning a member without the evidence to do so.
    Why should Christians and especially teachers who are Christian be concerned? If this ruling is allowed to stand, no Christian teacher will be allowed to express their religious views regarding moral issues in any public forum. I objected to the use of Xtra West, the newspaper of the gay minority, which has obscene and vulgar classified ads, as a  recommended classroom resource.   I objected to the use of propaganda produced by the Gay and Lesbian Educators of BC, published and distributed by the BC Teachers Federation. One of them, Counselling Lesbian and Gay Youth, stated "we must dishonour the attitude that heterosexuality is the only acceptable orientation", even though that would mean dishonouring the religious beliefs of Christians, Jews, Muslims, etc. Another resource, Challenging Homophobia in Schools, is full of biased data and depicts David and Jonathan as a homosexual couple. Remember, these are learning resources which are enthusiastically endorsed by the senior leadership of the BC Teachers Federation.
    The apostle Paul cited his credentials--perhaps I can, too. A teacher and counsellor for 13 years, with two masters degrees and an almost complete doctorate in psychology, 14 letters of commendation in my file,and not one letter of discipline for any reason; a community volunteer as a Big Brother, president of the Child & Youth Support Society for 14 years; Employee and Family Assistance Counsellor in private practice and a Registered Clinical Counsellor; appointed by the Minister of Health to be the Chairman of the District Health Council; past member of the Quesnel Christian Ministerial Association, and an elder, Sunday School teacher and lay preacher of the Christian and Missionary Alliance Church.
    Whatever I wrote was entirely in my off the job role as a "watchman" of our children, whom I do not want indoctrinated with false teachings about sexuality; nor will I be forced to be the agent by which they are instructed with immoral teaching. The College of Teachers dislikes the fact that I said so publicly.
    I am very worried for the plight of children who are confused about their orientation--they need to hear a message of hope that there are recognized and effective treatments for those who wish to change their orientation.
    My pastor asked me if I were willing to "be a martyr for the cause". I told him I would rather be a soldier like Gideon, who achieved a great victory against huge odds by trusting in the Lord.
    I will be appealing this verdict of the College of Teachers, and I do so for all of us who entrust our children to the public school system. Don't leave me like Uriah, but stand with me: The righteous are as bold as a lion.

In case you may have missed it, the reference to Uriah is to the Biblical story of Uriah the Hittite, who was ordered placed in the forefront of a battle, to be slain by the enemy when his fellow-soldiers retreated.

I would appeal to all who are moved by Chris’s appeal to support him by doing the following:

1. If you share Chris’s faith, pray for him.

2. Write to the British Columbia College of Teachers protesting their high-handed actions against those who speak out against the pro-homosexuality program.

3. Write to the Premier, with a copy to the Minister of Education, protesting the abuse of power 

by the BC College of Teachers.

4. E-mail Chris Kempling, to tell him you are standing with him, and to let him know what actions you have taken on his behalf.

The addresses you need are the following:

British Columbia College of Teachers
405-1385 West Eighth Avenue
Vancouver BC V6H 3V9
Fax: 604-731-9142
(A phone call to BCCT yielded the information that they do not give out an e-mail address by which they can be reached.)

Hon. Gordon Campbell, Premier
Room 156, Parliament Buildings
Victoria, B. C. V8V 1X4
Fax: 250-387-0087
E-mail:  Premier@gov.bc.ca

Hon. Christy Clark, Minister of Education and Deputy Premier
Room 248, Parliament Buildings
Victoria, B. C. V8V 1X4
Fax: 250-387-3200
E-mail:  christy.clark.mla@leg.bc.ca

Mr. Chris Kempling
1158 Croft Road
Quesnel, BC  V2J 5R5
E-mail: Kempling@telus.net

Newly posted contact information:
To get contact information for your local MLA, go to the government website page "MLA Information:  Biographical Information by Constituency," find your constituency, and click on the name of the MLA.  This will give you his or her voice phone number, fax number, and address, both for Victoria and for the constituency location.

Note:  Two of Chris Kempling's articles are posted on this website.  We think that if you read them you will be impressed by the care of his research, and by the good will shown, contrary to the findings of the BC College of Teachers.  The two essays referred to are on our page on "Opposing the Pro-Homosexuality Agenda"  and are entitled
"The Homophobia Myth" and "Challenging Homophobia in Schools:  A Critical  Review"

--E.S.H.
[The article immediately above was posted to this website on June 3, 2002.]

A Later Letter from Chris Kempling (dated June 10, 2002):

Friends and Fellow Believers:
I have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from all of you.
In just four days I have received over 75 e-mails supporting me (and one
against), from all over Canada and five U.S. states.  I really
appreciate you willingness to stand alongside me in this spiritual
battle, for that is what I believe it is.

Three Christian lawyers have been advising me, and believe this is a
very significant case which could go all the way to the Supreme Court.
They also believe I have an excellent case.  I have not yet hired a
lawyer and wish to respond to a rumour that I "left my lawyer in the
lurch" at my hearing.  I did not have a lawyer and did not attend my
hearing.  My reasons are both legal and personal, but what I can say is
that it relates to an alleged conflict of interest on the part of those
who sat in judgment of me.  My three legal advisors tell me that
although it was not a good idea not to go, it still does not jeopardize
my chances of winning.

I am told that the BCCT lawyer is a formidable adversary, and that I
must have the best legal representation available.  Please pray that the
right legal warrior will step forward, and that I will be able to secure
the resources necessary to see this battle to the end.  Thanks again for
all your support and God bless.
Chris Kempling

Note from  the editor of this website:  We need many more people to write in support of Chris.  If you have not done so yet, take a moment to write, especially to the premier with a copy to the Minister of education   Send a copy of what you have written to Chris for his encouragement.   (e-mail and mailing addresses given above).  To get contact information for Members of the British Columbia Legislature, including cabinet ministers, go to www.legis.gov.bc.ca/mla/mla_alphaemailinfo.asp 

Later news : Chris was granted a request for a postponement of his "sentencing" session--to October 21, 2002; and then it was further postponed at the request of the BC College of Teachers to some time in mid-November.   Definite News received November 9th:  Chris Kempling's "sentencing" session before the BCCT was held on November 18th.

A Message from Chris Kempling (Dated September 25th) on Other Developments, Including the "Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defence Fund"  

The following is a message, sent to us by Chris Kempling on September 25th (2002): 

Friends:  I have been grateful for your prayers and letters of support and encouragement.  While the recent headline in the Vancouver Sun made it appear that I could soon be unemployed, I am confident that I will still be teaching when the College of Teachers is replaced by a more representative College of  Educators, promised earlier this year by the Liberal government.

On Thursday, September 19th, I met with my lawyer William Clark at the BCTF offices to appeal their denial of legal aid benefits
. . . . .

The BCTF Executive Committee subsequently decided to grant me legal aid, not only for the sentencing hearing on October 21st, but also for the Supreme Court appeal, likely to occur in the spring.  They limit their support to $145/hour, however.

This case will be costly.  My lawyer is an extremely experienced administrative law expert, and charges $300/hour for his services.  Court costs and disbursements will also be substantial, as well as expenses for subpoenaed witnesses.  To ensure that Christian teachers have the freedom to speak out when Christian children are at risk of being indoctrinated with the homosexual
agenda, I am asking for your support.

The trust fund is entitled the Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund.  The three trustees are Maurice Johnson, Jim Sagert, and Brian Gruber, all Christian public school teachers who are members of the E-Free, Alliance, and Lutheran churches, respectively.  "Mo" Johnson was the first person to graduate from Trinity College (now TWU).  Any surplus funds will be made available to other Christian teachers who may face a similar situation.

If you would care to contribute to the trust fund, you may make a contribution at any Royal Bank branch.  The transit number is 4720. The account number is 101-030-5.   I would be very grateful for your support, but especially your prayers, on October 21st, when I will be sentenced.

Chris Kempling
Kempling@telus.net


See the article entitled
"Meetings Held in Support of Chris Kempling" 
on the "Events" page of this website.

 

See the article entitled
"CASJAFVA Holds Successful Rally in Support of Chris Kempling (on November 9th)"
on the "Events" page of this website.

A Message from Chris Received December 24, 2002:

Friends:  The Penalty Hearing panel of the BC College of Teachers is
recommending that I be suspended for one month without pay, and that every
jurisdiction in the country as well as the U.S. be informed of my "sin".  On
January 23, the full council of the College will either confirm that
recommendation or change it--in fact, they could increase the penalty.

Now that the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that our school boards no longer
have the right to represent the views of religious parents in their decision
making, it is more important than ever that we win this fight with the BC
College of Teachers.  If Christian teachers in the public school system cannot
express their concerns regarding curriculum materials which are offensive to
our beliefs, even off the job as I did, then there simply is no way to ensure
that our children will not be indoctrinated with immoral teachings.

I have always believed strongly in the value of public education, in the vision
of Edgar Ryerson in the last century to have a school system which would
include those from all faiths. I no longer have that confidence.  For the sake
of our children, it may be time to put our efforts into developing high quality
Christian schools in every community.  But since many Christian teachers, even
those teaching in private schools, also belong to the College of Teachers, we
need to demonstrate convincingly that Christian values do have a right to be
heard.  I thank those of you who have contributed to my support of the
Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund, but as you might expect,
much more will be needed.  Please stand with me, and, as it says in
Jude, "contend for the faith that was entrusted to all the saints".


BC Parents and Teachers for Life Letter to Education Minister Regarding the Kempling Case, Teachers' Rights, and the BCCT

British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life has sent the following letter to the Education Minister, Christy Clark, with a copy to Premier Gordon Campbell.  The letter covers not only the Kempling case, but related broader issues.  Here is the text of the letter sent

Facsimile Transmission with Copy by E-Mail

July 31, 2002

Hon. Christy Clark, Minister of Education and Deputy Premier
Room 248, Parliament Buildings
Victoria, B. C. V8V 1X4

Dear Ms. Clark:

The British Columbia College of Teachers, as you know, is a body set up by the provincial government and regulated by its law. Unfortunately, the College has abused its power and attempted to interfere in the most blatant way with the freedom of a religious educational institution (Trinity Western University), and now with the freedom of an individual member of the teaching profession.

We are writing on behalf of British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life to protest the abuse of power by the BC College of Teachers in finding that Mr. Chris Kempling was guilty of conduct unbecoming a member of the College. It is our understanding that Mr. Kempling was doing nothing more than exercising his rights as a Canadian citizen and a professional member of the teaching profession in protesting against a program that he felt was harmful to students. His objections to the program were based on a concern for the welfare of young people, and he has backed his statements with evidence from medical research and statistics. Mr. Kempling’s performance as a counsellor in a public school is not the subject of complaint. It is merely for exercising his rights of free speech that he has been judged and found guilty.

We would ask that the provincial government act immediately to restrict the power of the BC College of Teachers and, if necessary, to restructure it so that it does not use its power to intimidate teachers or prevent their exercising their rights as free citizens. Nor should the BCCT be seen to be acting as an enforcer of BC Teachers’ Federation decisions, as it appears to be in the Kempling case, where Mr. Kempling is in difficulty with the BCCT for criticizing the pro-homosexuality program of the BCTF.

We would like to mention a separate but related matter: Teachers of our acquaintance have been called before committees of school board personnel and, while told to keep the proceedings secret, have been led to expect that that they were in danger of discipline for expressing their views either outside the school or to other teachers. Teachers called before committees that have the power to require them to give an account of their actions should not be required or expected to keep proceedings against them secret. A teacher should be able to freely seek advice and choose his or her own advocate (either a lawyer or otherwise), not necessarily a BC Teachers’ Federation or local teachers’ union representative. Proper records should be made of any proceedings of such committees and shared with all parties involved.

Both school boards and the BC College of Teachers come under the control of the provincial government and are creatures of provincial legislation. We would urge that your government act to protect the rights of teachers. It is important that these rights be protected not only because teachers are entitled to the same rights as other Canadian citizens, but because it is essential that education remain a matter open to public debate, and the freely-expressed opinions of individual teachers are essential to that debate.

The matters which we have drawn to your attention are urgent, since the rights of British Columbians are in jeopardy. We would respectfully ask for an early reply to this letter, and hope to hear that your government will act to redress the injustices which we have called to your attention.

Further issues that need to be addressed are the nature of the pro-homosexuality program being promoted, and the validity of the objections being raised concerning it. Following this letter is a list of some sources of relevant information available on the Internet. We might point out that in the United States there is already concern regarding the legal liability that schools will face when the repercussions of homosexual behaviour are experienced.

 

Sincerely,

[signed by the president and the secretary of BC Parents and Teachers for Life]

Copies to:
Hon. Gordon Campbell, Premier
Room 156, Parliament Buildings
Victoria, B. C. V8V 1X4

Mr. Chris Kempling
1158 Croft Road
Quesnel, B. C. V2J 5R5

Information Resources from the Website of British Columbia Parents and Teachers for Life

(www.bcptl.org) Related to Topics Dealt with in the Above Letter

On the page entitled: “Standing Up for Parents’ and Teachers’ Rights”: “BC School Counsellor Found ‘Guilty’ after Objecting to Pro-Homosexuality Agenda,” “Teachers’ and Parents’ Rights Denied,” “Teachers’ Rights to Moral Protest Threatened”

On the page “Opposing the Pro-Homosexuality Agenda”: “Surrey Web Site Promotes ‘Gay-Straight Alliances,’ Links Students to ‘Little Sister's’ "The Homophobia Myth” [by Chris Kempling], “Challenging Homophobia in Schools: A Pro-Homosexuality Resource . . . ,” “Challenging Homophobia in Schools: A Critical Review” [by Chris Kempling], "Moving Beyond Silence . . ."--Comments on a B.C. Local Teachers' Union Publication”

Other Sources of Information from the Internet

“The Negative Health Effects of Homosexuality,” by Dr. Timothy J. Daily at
http://www.frc.org/get/is01b1.cfm

National [U.S.] Center for Disease Control: Divisions of HIV/AIDS Prevention:

http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/stats.htm#exposure


How to Contribute Financially to Chris Kempling's Legal Defence

A trust fund has been set up.  It is the "Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund."  Money contributed to this fund will help Christopher Kempling with the expenses of his legal defence.  Subsequently,  money in the fund after Chris's defence can be used to help other Christian teachers who may find themselves in a similar position.

If you would like to contribute to the trust fund, you may make a contribution at any Royal Bank branch.  The transit number is 4720. The account number is 101-030-5.

If you prefer to contribute by cheque, send your contribution to:

Christian Public School Teachers' Legal Defense Fund
      c/o Jim Sagert
      798 Beaubien Ave
      Quesnel, BC V2J 1S5



"Another family investigated 
for the way children are disciplined"

From CBC online, last updated  Jul 11:
AYLMER, ONT. - "The Church of God congregation in Aylmer, Ont., faced more negative media Thursday, after it was revealed that a second family was being investigated for the way they discipline their children. . . . .

"In July 2001, seven other children were taken in by authorities who were concerned about corporal punishment in their home. The four boys and three girls, aged six to 14, were also members of the Church of God congregation.
They were kept in foster care for about three weeks, but the court was told the experience was devastating and traumatic for them. . . . ."  [See CBC story.]


 

From "Family News in Focus," May 23, 2002:  [In the United States]
EEOC: NEA Must Honor Religious Objectors
By Stuart Shepard, correspondent

Can one person really go up against a union and win? Just ask Dennis Robey.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has ordered the National Education Association (NEA) to stop badgering religious teachers who object to the union's political agenda.

The EEOC's determination came as the result of one teacher, Dennis Robey. He protested because in order to be granted religious-objector status the NEA required detailed answers about his beliefs, with documentation, every year.

"If they're going to have this as their form, when I fill it out the first time, I shouldn't have to fill it out every single year," Robey said. "I shouldn't have to go to my pastor every single year and have him sign some form for me."

The EEOC maintained the NEA is violating the Civil Rights Act of 1964, saying an employee cannot be forced to support a union if it violates the employee's sincerely held religious beliefs. The EEOC said once that objection is established it does not need to be proven each year.

Robey said his Christian beliefs led him to oppose the NEA's support of issues such as abortion, school clinics and homosexuality. As a religious objector, he can legally have his union dues diverted to a charity.

[For the rest of the above article, go to the  "Focus on the Family", and employ the search facility, using the key phrase--in quotes--"NEA Must Honor Religious Objectors."]

 

Freedom for Parents and Teachers

The job action taken by British Columbia teachers has brought to the public’s attention the many extracurricular activities which teachers voluntarily sponsor and lead on behalf of the children and young people they teach. These activities are a testimony to the genuine interest most teachers take in their students.

Since teachers give of their time voluntarily it may seem odd that during a job action a union can forbid teachers to sponsor such activities. At any rate, a teacher should surely not be penalized for helping a student with school work after class. But such is the power of the British Columbia Teachers Federation (BCTF), that a teacher could actually be found to be in violation of the BCTF “Code of Ethics” for giving a student help outside of class during a job action. It has been suggested that such a teacher could even forfeit his or her job, no doubt through being expelled from the union. 

This is only one example of the extraordinary power which over the years has accrued to the years to unions and professional organizations such as the BCTF. Not only is it necessary to be a union member to teach in the public schools of British Columbia, but the union can take the dues taken by compulsion from its members and spend them for anything it pleases. Examples are: the money spent to attempt to force Surrey School Board to approve pro-homosexuality books as teaching materials for primary students, and the support given to “Gay-Straight Alliances,” and the money used some years ago to compel some teachers to be a part of the Teacher’s Federation even though they wished to be free of it because of its support of abortion.

By tomorrow, probably, the labour dispute will be settled by government legislation. We sincerely hope that it will be settled fairly, recognizing the just claims of both teachers and the public. But what is needed is a much more general settlement: one which will restore the rights of individual teachers and of parents—the rights of individual teachers to be free of a tyrannical union, and the rights of parents to have a proper say in their children’s education.  
--E.S.H.  (written January 24, 2002)

Teachers' and Parents' Rights Denied

Both teachers and parents in British Columbia have had their rights denied.  Teachers in public schools, because of their union contracts, must belong to the British Columbia Teachers' Federation, which has almost unlimited power to use for political purposes (short of direct contributions to political parties), the dues obtained by legal compulsion.  Local teachers' unions can give donations to school-board candidates, playing a role in choosing their own bosses.  

Parents who choose to have their children attend public schools have their rights severely limited.  They can help choose school board members, but the power of such boards to make decisions is severely limited.  And, if the decision of Justice Saunders made in December, 1998, is allowed to stand, parents whose religious beliefs have an impact on their morality will be second-class citizens in their ability to influence their elected representatives.  (See the article below entitled "Appeals Court Reasserts Rights of People of Faith.")  n

Teachers' Rights to Moral Protest Threatened

Several cases have come to our attention where teachers who have spoken out  moral issues have been "hauled" into secret meetings or asked attend meetings where their activities have been inquired into.

The circumstances of these incidents ought to cause serious concern for the freedom of teachers of faith and conscience.  

If we are concerned about the rights which Canadians have hitherto taken for granted,  surely we should be concerned about situations where teachers are hauled into meetings and led to fear for their jobs because they exercise the right (or duty) of expressing their moral convictions.  What is especially disturbing is that these meetings can be in the nature of secret tribunals, where teachers are warned not to let anyone know of the proceedings.  Hence there may be many more teachers in the same position that we do not know about.    Another concern is that teachers in two cases were not allowed to name their own spokespersons, but are limited to defence by union representatives.  Such representatives may be personally opposed to the teachers' moral stands.  n
 

Appeals Court Reasserts Rights of People of Faith

(Note:  The following article was written following the September, 2000, ruling of Justice Mackenzie mentioned below.  Unfortunately, even the limited protection offered by Justice Mackenzie's decision is now threatened.  His decision has been appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada.  See the article "Surrey Book Case to Be Heard in the Supreme Court of Canada")

The decision of the B.C. Appeals Court reaffirming the Surrey School Board’s right to deny the use of certain pro-homosexuality books as formal teaching materials was certainly a victory of sorts for parental rights, but we should not be lulled into complacency.

It is gratifying that, in the “reasons for judgement,” written by the Honourable Mr. Justice Mackenzie and released this September, he gave a devastating rebuttal of the decision of Madam Justice Saunders in December, 1998. Justice Saunders, incredibly, had ruled, in effect that parents and other citizens whose morality springs from their religious beliefs have no right to have those morals influence school board decisions.

In a cogent argument, Justice Mackenzie asked, “Are only those with a non-religiously informed conscience to be permitted to participate in decisions involving moral instruction of children in the public schools? Must those whose moral positions arise from a conscience influenced by religion be required to leave those convictions behind or otherwise be excluded from participation while those who espouse similar positions emanating from a conscience not informed by religious considerations are free to participate without restriction? . . . . A religiously informed conscience should not be accorded any privilege, but neither should it be placed under a disability.”

In what ought to be regarded as a major pronouncement on behalf of liberty, Justice Mackenzie also said, No society can be said to be truly free where only those whose morals are uninfluenced by religion are entitled to participate in deliberations related to moral issues of education in public schools.”

Justice Mackenzie’s judgement is insightful, and his decision (and that of the two concurring judges of the appeal court) is gratifying. But in his “Reasons for Judgement” we can also see that social engineers who happen to be teachers can easily bypass the regulations made by a school board. Regarding the three books in question (Asha’s Mums, Belinda’s Bouquet, and One Dad, Two Dads, Brown Dad, Blue Dads), Justice Mackenzie wrote, “. . . There is nothing to prevent the three books being placed in school libraries within the District and made accessible to teachers and students in the same manner as other resources within a school library. In the context of K-1 classes where the students are just learning to read, use would presumably mean being read to the class by the teacher in story time or some similar circumstances with perhaps a discussion period about the story afterward.”

We can readily see how such a discussion period could become a full-fledged lesson on the acceptability of homosexuality.

In March of this year, well before the justices of the Appeals Court of British Columbia brought down their judgement, the “Ad Hoc Committee on Homophobia and Heterosexism of the Surrey Teachers’ Association had brought out “A Resource Guide for Classroom Teachers (Kindergarten to Grade Seven) in which they in effect gave hints as to how to bypass school-board objections.  

The 1997 British Columbia Teachers Associations' resolution to develop a program “to combat homophobia and heterosexism” was a vote to develop such a program for all BC schools. That program is no doubt reflected in their “handbook for educators,” entitled Challenging Homophobia in Schools—distributed, we understand, to all the public schools in the province.  We have not yet had an opportunity to examine this book, but have seen its "Table of Contents."  The following titles of just a few sections of this book may give an idea of its contents:  "Homophobia and heterosexism, Who and How They Hurt," "Levels of Attitude About Homosexuals & Bisexuals,"  "Transgender People,"  "Gay/Straight Alliances in Schools,"  "What is Family? (K-3)," "Two Dads Who Are Blue (K-3)," "What Makes a Family (K-5)," and "Famous Lesbians, Gays, and Bisexuals (8-12)."  n

 

 What Choices Do Parents Have?


Cross-reference:  
This article, is to be found on the "Help for Parents" page of this website.

"Persona Non Grata"?

The December, 1998, decision of Justice Saunders,  appealed by the Surrey School Board (see article above for the results of that appeal), had far-reaching  implications for parents of faith.

The day after the decision of Madam Justice Saunders in a case against the Surrey School Board, I visited the Internet site where British Columbians can read the “Reasons for Judgement” in cases that come before the British Columbia Supreme Court and the B.C. Court of Appeals (http//www.courts.gov.bc.ca). What I found there was deeply disturbing. The Surrey School Board, as is well known by British Columbians, had ruled against the use of certain materials as “learning resources” or teaching materials. Several people took the Board to court for doing this. In her judgement rendered in December in the Supreme Court of B.C., Judge Saunders ruled, in effect , that a very large and diverse group of parents and other citizens are denied the right to influence Board policy in moral matters.

Judge Saunders ruled that the School Board erred in the way it arrived at its decision on the teaching materials precisely because it gave significant consideration to the fact that the books would conflict with the views of parents who are religious. She wrote, “I conclude that the words [in the School Act stating that schools should be] ‘conducted on strictly secular . . . principles’ precludes a decision significantly influenced by religious considerations.” In the rest of her “Reasons for Judgement” she makes clear that even the firm conviction of parents that educational materials are in conflict with their moral beliefs is not to be given significant consideration if those beliefs derive from religious teaching. (The judge quotes statements supporting the Surrey School Board’s stand from religious leaders who are Christian, Muslim, Sikh, and Hindu; yet instead of acknowledging that these statements count in the Board’s favour, she uses the fact that they are religious leaders to discount their right to influence the Board’s judgement.)

One is tempted to ask where Judge Saunders received her education? Is she unaware of the fact that many of our public morals derive from religious teaching—teaching found in the Ten Commandments and other parts of the Bible, but also teaching found in the writings of many world religions besides Christianity and Judaism? Are parents who are concerned about an outbreak of theft in the schools to be dismissed because they are religious and the Bible says, “Thou shalt not steal”? Is lying about others to be legitimized in the schools because it says, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour”? The mind boggles at the logical consequences of the judge’s “reasons for judgement.”

This issue does not just concern three little children’s books. It has to do with the right of activist groups to propagandize for the acceptance of a behaviour which many parents oppose, either on moral grounds or because they feel it is unhealthy and dangerous.

The pro-homosexuality program was put forward as an answer to harassment of students from homes with homosexual parents. The parents in Surrey and in many other parts of British Columbia who support the Surrey School Board do not want any student harassed or hurt. Students need to understand that human beings have the right to be free from harassment and violence simply because they are human beings, not because they belong to any particular group in society.

Madam Justice Saunders’ decision came on the heels of an arbitration decision against the Surrey School Board for supporting the transfer of a child at the request of a parent who was concerned lest her child be indoctrinated by a homosexual activist teacher. The implications of the arbitration ruling are also disturbing. Both these decisions should be wake-up calls to the majority of parents and other citizens who do not want the public schools used for the type of social engineering desired by the minority of activists who want to promote a favourable view of homosexual behaviour. n

The Escalating Attack on Parents’ Rights: The “Connectedness” of Things

[Article from B.C. Parents' Alert, January 1998]

First they attacked the rights of pro-life teachers, but those who were not active pro-lifers or public-school teachers did nothing. Then they attacked the rights of parents of public-school students, but most who were not directly affected did nothing.* Now they attack the children, and independent education, and unless we take strong and well-considered action it may be too late for us to restore in our time the rights of either public-school or independent-school parents and children.

It is never pleasant to be the bearer of bad news. Unfortunately, a lot of things have happened in the year just past which spell out bad news for parents--particularly for parents who are attempting to bring up their children to honour the moral virtues which are part of our heritage. The fight led by the “Gay and Lesbian Educators” to promote pro-homosexuality education in the schools has disturbed many parents who were previously unaware of the attempts being made to usurp their legitimate role as moral guides for their children.

It helps us get perspective if we realize that the current attack on parental rights is not a sudden or isolated development. The attack on the rights of parents cannot really be separated from the attack on the rights of teachers holding to traditional morality. Long before the recent attacks on parental rights, teachers had been compelled to support pro-abortion propaganda through their fees. In spite of some sacrificial acts on the part of teachers who spent thousands of dollars to fight this injustice, their stand received little support from the general public, and the B.C. Teachers' Federation was allowed to continue to support abortion with money from dues teachers were compelled to give in order to teach in the public schools.

Enquiries as to the position of the provincial government with regards to pro-abortion counselling and referrals in the public schools received vague answers from both the Social Credit and the succeeding NDP Ministers of Education. Then in September of 1992 a letter from the then Minister of Education confirmed our worst fears: There was, according to the Minister’s letter, no law or ministry directive which prevented a public school counsellor, teacher, or school nurse from referring a school student to an abortion agency; and, furthermore, no law or ministry directive which could determine whether or not the student’s parent should be informed or consulted before a student was exposed to abortion advocacy or referred to an abortion agency.

In January of 1993 an amended Infants Act became law in B.C. Its provisions undermined the rights of parents and, in effect, authorized pro-abortion referrals in the schools.

A petition signed by thousands of B.C. citizens was presented in the legislature in June of 1995 asking that the government enact legislation prohibiting pro-abortion counselling and referrals in the public schools. In spite of this petition and a follow-up questionnaire to MLA's, the government took no action to remedy the situation.

In 1997 we were faced with the attempt to further undermine parental rights to determine the nature of their children's education. The "Gay and Lesbian Educators" are leading a fight for pro-homosexuality education in the public schools. It is evident that what they want are programs to promote a positive attitude towards a homosexual life-style. As we pointed out in the last issue of British Columbia Parents' Alert, these homosexual activists want school resources to "positively affirm the achievements of gay and lesbian people" and they want information about lesbians and "gays" (information acceptable to them, of course) "included in the curriculum, primary through post-secondary." They want youth to be provided with "positive lesbian and gay role models."

A rally held in Vancouver to protest the attempt to propagandize youth for the homosexual life-style was shut down by noisy and aggressive activists who apparently did not recognize the right of concerned parents and others to object to their plans.

When asked to approve materials of this type for use with public-school students, the Surrey School Board turned down the request. This summer, pro-homosexuality activists launched an action against the Surrey School Board because of its refusal to give approval for the use of the materials. At considerable cost to the taxpayer, the School Board is having to defend its actions in court.

When some ethnically Chinese Christians signed a petition opposing gay-friendly classroom materials, they were told in effect, by a school board employee that they should return where they came from. (The school-board's secretary-treasurer later wrote a letter in which regret was expressed for the hostile letter to the petitioners.)

Parents and others who have objected to the pro-homosexuality programs have been accused of fomenting hatred, and had their rights to free speech on the issue questioned.

Not unrelated to the issue of the promotion of pro-homosexual programs is the provincial government's action this summer to redefine "spouse" to include homosexual partners. This was in spite of opposition of religious leaders from a broad spectrum of beliefs.

This summer saw the revelation that the government's web site for B. C. young people had electronic connections that led to sexually explicit material and thousands of on-line ads. While we would not suggest that the connections were intentional on the government's part, we would suggest that the government was not sufficiently careful in appointing those who developed the web site. Perhaps this is an indication of what can happen when the guidance of the young is left to the judgement of the government.

Not unrelated to the drive to promote the homosexual life-style as normal are the actions of the B.C. College of Teachers. The College has decided to appeal a ruling ordering them to approve Trinity Western University's Teacher Education Program. The College, in June of 1996, had voted to reject TWU's bid to extend its teacher education program. The College made it clear that for the majority of the members of its Council the real reason for their denial of Trinity's application is the University's Christian world view and its standard of student conduct. Specifically the College objected--and still objects--to Trinity's requiring students to commit themselves to refrain from homosexual behaviour. The College's appeal now may result in a lengthy and costly time in the law-courts for the privately-funded Evangelical Christian university. (See the article on Page 7 of this issue of Parents’ Alert.)

As for the public schools, their future may well be in the balance. If parents and others can make them secure places where the basic beliefs of parents of traditional morality are not challenged and undermined, those schools may regain the confidence of parents. If, on the other hand, people of traditional morality do not take positive actions to oppose those who would take over the schools to promote another agenda, the future of the public schools is bleak. And a failure of those parents and their supporters to take positive action will be read as a sign that parental rights and the rights of all those of traditional morality may continue to be trampled on with impunity. Already there are signs that no institutions, whether public or private, will be safe from the social engineering of those who are seeking to reshape society in a way that will free it from the moral constraints which have up till now managed to hold it together. n


* Readers will recognize the indebtedness of this wording to the well-known comment on the results of inaction during the Nazi regime. Of course, there is no intention to equate our opponents with Nazis.


 

At a Glance: A Partial History of the Escalating Attacks on B.C. Parents’ Rights

September, 1992 The Minister of Education confirms that pro-abortion counselling and referrals in the schools are not forbidden.
January, 1993 The revised Infants Act becomes law in B. C., undermining parents’ rights, and giving legal backing to pro-abortion counselling and referrals in schools.
June, 1995 After a B.C. Teachers for Life petition signed by thousands is presented against pro-abortion counselling and referrals, MLA’s fail to act.
March, 1997 After a vigorous campaign by “Gay and Lesbian Educators” (GALE), the BCTF, at its AGM, votes to develop a program “to combat homophobia and heterosexism” within schools. GALE publications lead us to believe that what is envisaged is a program to present homosexual behaviour as normal and acceptable. The Vancouver Sun reports that Education Minister Paul Ramsay backs the BCTF plan.
August, 1997 Surrey School Board is taken to court over its refusal to allow use in the schools of books portraying the homosexual life-style in a favourable way.
November, 1997 The press reports that the BCTF is donating $40,000 towards a court challenge of the Surrey School Board’s “ban” on books. The Surrey Teachers’ Association is also donating to the same cause.
December, 1997 Surrey Teachers’ Association passes motions to further advance pro-homosexuality education. 
December, 1998 Justice Saunders rules, in effect, that parents who derive their morals from religion should not significantly influence school board policy. 
March, 2000 BCTF votes to promote Gay-Straight Alliances.
October,   2001     Complainants in Surrey "book case" win right to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada in spite of missed deadline.
May,
2002
The BC College of Teachers found Chris Kempling guilty of "conduct unbecoming" a member for his criticism of the BC Teachers' Federation's pro-homosexuality program.  The finding is one bound to intimidate teachers who might otherwise inform parents of harmful school programs.
December, 2002 The Supreme Court of Canada released its decision in the Chamberlain vs. Surrey School Board Case.  The Court claimed that the Board made its decision regarding the three books on tthe wrong basis, and ordered the Board to consider the matter all over again.  Primary children must be able to discuss homosexual families.
February,
2004 
 

On July 28th to 30th, Chris Kempling’s appeal of the BCCT ruling was heard in BC Supreme Court.  Judge Holmes reserved decision.  On February 3, 2004, after over six months of waiting, Chris learned that the judge had ruled against him, siding with the BC College of Teachers against this teacher who had exposed and protested against the pro-homosexuality propagandizing of students.  Chris has since appealed to the BC Court of Appeals.

 

April,
2006
The government of British Columbia signed an agreement with Peter and Murray Corren in which it a gave special role to these two private citizens to influence the revision of curriculum.  This role was not given to any parent group and the agreement specified that the "opting for special delivery" would nolt be available except for certain subjects, thus shutting of an alternative for parents who might not want the school to handle certain sensitive subjects.
 

Date this page was last updated:  May 18, 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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