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Anti-SOGI demonstrations at elementary schools prompt calls to renew protest legislation

North Vancouver, B.C. -

Some North Vancouver parents want the province to re-introduce legislation prohibiting protests near schools, following a series of anti-SOGI demonstrations.

Justin Liew, a parent at Ridgeway Elementary, said in mid-September, a group of people were standing near school property during student drop-off, holding signs and voicing their opposition to SOGI 123, which helps provide educators with resources to create an inclusive education. Liew said both parents and students were wary about the demonstration.

“One of our friends, their kid called home concerned that they were just trying to get to school and they felt a little unsafe,” Liew said.

In a video posted to YouTube from the account 1 Million March 4 Children, one of the protestors can be heard speaking to students and parents about the march, which occurred Sept. 20 across the country and advocated for the removal of SOGI – that is, sexual orientation and gender identity – from education.

The protester can also be heard voicing his thoughts about the educational resources, which he refers to as “the SOGI agenda.”

“We’re not against trans people," the protester says in the video.

"We’re not against anything like that, we just don’t want our kids being taught things that the parents may not agree with."

CTV News reached out to the individual for comment but did not hear back before publication.


Liew said SOGI provides students a safe environment to express how they feel.

“It is not about hiding things from parents,” said Liew. “It’s frustrating reading the official literature and what’s actually happening and hearing things from actual students and teachers, and then seeing it portrayed as a scary thing."

In a statement to CTV News, the North Vancouver School District said it’s committed to providing a welcoming and inclusive teaching and learning environment for all.

"The messaging shared by protesters does not reflect our values as a school district community,” the statement continued.

Ridgeway Elementary isn’t the only North Shore school where protests have occurred. West Vancouver police told CTV News the same protester showed up to a school in the area and was arrested for failing to leave school grounds.


During the pandemic, the province introduced the Access to Services (COVID-19) Act to restrict protests around schools, hospitals and vaccine clinics. In July, the legislation expired, but Liew said he’d like for it to be reinstated.

“There’s a time and place to protest and I don’t think schools or hospitals are that venue,” he said.

At Tuesday’s legislature session, Education and Child Care Minister Rachna Singh said it’s an option the province is exploring.

“Schools are no place for protest,” Singh said. “I feel for those parents, and we really want to make sure that our schools are safe and inclusive.” Top Stories

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