The Halton Catholic School Board (HCSB) in Canada forbids the formulation of any student group containing the word ‘gay’ in its title, despite passing a new equity and inclusive education policy on 15 February.
They have opted instead to adhere to a number of rulings that follow a document known as the ‘Pastoral Guidelines To Assist Students of Same Sex Attraction’. The document was created by Catholic bishops and was heavily drawn upon in the creation of the equity policy, despite the fact that it explicitly condemns and prohibits any homosexual activity, claiming that if gay people fail to live a ‘moral life’ then they must turn instead to ‘a life of chastity’. Sex therefore, is only for heterosexual married couples.
The proposed policy has met with opposition from some members of the board, with Anthony Danko, a trustee, voting against the motion due to his concern that procedural supports from the Pastoral Guidelines document are to be used.
The policy will now go out as a proposal to the community for three weeks, in order to receive feedback. It will be circulated amongst parents, teachers, students, church councils and priests, before the final verdict is announced in April.