Thanks to the young folk for leading the way

The school district to be clear beyond a shadow of a doubt about the need for respect and acceptance of all people.

A great big thanks to The Surrey Leader for your coverage of the attempt by students and others to bring about a standalone policy on homophobia in Surrey schools.

Even more significant, a huge thanks to Anthony Hope, Michaela Milne and others for placing this so effectively on the agenda.

As a parent and as a local minister at Northwood United Church, I am quite aware of the need for community institutions like the school district to be clear beyond a shadow of a doubt about the need for respect and acceptance of all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

It is good to have a blanket policy against discrimination of any kind, but in today’s cultural climate, there are some things we need to be specific about because discrimination, intimidation and homophobia is unfortunately alive and well in our schools.

As a local minister in a United Church which has tried to be specific about our respect and acceptance of GLBTQ folk in our community, we have come to know that “everyone welcome” is not enough. To move beyond homophobic behaviour and attitudes in schools, churches and the community in general, everyone needs to come out of the closet.

Thanks, young folk, for leading the way.

 

Will Sparks

Surrey North Delta Leader