Around 2,500 people protested at Queen’s Park in Toronto and at Victoria Park in London, Ont., April 14, according to estimates by the Canadian Press. The protestors demanded that Premier Kathleen Wynne and the Liberal government withdraw a revised sex-ed curriculum slated to be taught in September. Photo by Evan Boudreau

Thousands join protest against sex-ed curriculum

  • April 15, 2015

Demanding that parents be properly consulted, an estimated 2,500 people held loud protests in Toronto and London April 14 against Ontario's new sex-ed curriculum.

About 2,000 people descended on Queen's Park while a crowd of approximately 500 protested at London's Victoria Park, according to estimates by the Canadian Press.

They demanded that the Liberal government of Kathleen Wynne withdraw a revised sex-ed curriculum that is scheduled for implementation in September, and then fully consult with parents on a new curriculum.

The protests were organized by Campaign Life Coalition in response to objections across the province to what the pro-family organization calls the government's "age-inappropriate, overly explicit sex-education curriculum for elementary schools."

Released in February, the new curriculum compels teaching about same-sex marriage in Grades 1 through 3,  “sexting”  beginning in Grade 4, masturbation in Grade 6, progressing to learning about risky sexual behaviours in later years. Opponents charge that the curriculum will sexualize young children and rob them of their childhood innocence.
Wynne or no other member from the Liberal Party addressed the crowd.

Ottawa-area MPP Jack MacLaren supported the protesters. He addressed them at Queen's Park.

“The government is going to ram something down your throats that you haven’t even been asked about," he said. "And if you had have been asked, what would you have said?”

The crowd chanted: “No!”

Demonstrators waived signs that denounced the curriculum and the Wynne government,  such as “Enough of Kathleen Wynne’s sex agenda.” Another sign read: "Hands off our kids."

In London, about 500 parents marched through downtown streets.

"Our children, our choice," they chanted.

Parents object to the curriculum because it teaches young children too much at an early age, and because the content is too graphic, they say. Many parents have also expressed resentment at how the curriculum was developed with little meaningful parental input.

In February, Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast warned the proposed sex education curriculum could threaten parental rights and force “immoral” teachings on Catholic school children.

“Mandatory instruction in the classroom will prevent parents from protecting their children from material they could judge age-inappropriate or immoral,” he said.  

Government attempts to revised the sex-ed curriculum in 2010 were withdrawn by the Dalton McGuinty government amid a storm of protests. When Wynne became Premier she vowed to bring back the revised curriculum.

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