GSA and Jason Kenney: Let's Keep Kids Safe, Not Exposed

Updated on April 6, 2017

Not All Kids Come From Safe Homes

Think about safety. Figure out what that means to you.

Figure out if, in your daily life, you feel safe being you.

If the answer is "yes, I feel safe," wonderful! You're in a good place within yourself and hopefully with your family.

There are countless kids, however, who do not. Now, imagine being a kid who identifies anywhere along the LGBTQ spectrum and not feeling safe at home. Imagine not being able to bring your same sex partner—whether that's your boyfriend if you're a boy, or your girlfriend if you're a girl—over to your parents' house or having to say that this person is just your "best friend."

Imagine being trans and having to hide that with your parents.

That's what the Alberta leader of the Progressive Conservative Association is suggesting.

“The law should neither force schools to release information to parents, nor should it create an adversarial relationship between parents and their children,” Jason Kenney said recently. “I trust teachers, principals and school counsellors to exercise their judgment about such matters, and that there should be a presumption that most parents are loving and caring, seeking only what is best for their children."

While it's a safe presumption that many parents do actually want the absolute best for their children—it would even be a safe bet that most parents want more for their kids than what they themselves had—not all parents maintain that charitable viewpoint if their children come out as gay.

As a high school teacher and GSA (Gay Straight Alliance, or Gender and Sexuality Alliance) advisor, I can safely say that I know many kids whose parents become almost hateful towards their children upon learning of their sexuality. I've heard of cases of slammed doors, yelling, and terrible comments being hurled towards children as a result of their kids coming out. I've heard about kids who were outed by school staff years ago, which led to kids seeing their belongings set fire to and seeing themselves without a home to call their own.

I've seen kids so devastated by their parents' lack of acceptance that they have contemplated suicide.

For many kids, a GSA is the one safe place where they can learn about ways they can help other kids who might be struggling and just feel safe and accepted for who they are. In addition, there are many allies who attend these meetings, and these are kids who may identify as straight - what right have we, as educators, to tell parents that their child is part of a school group designed to offer safety to those who may not feel safe?

We don't.

"All" Is Part Of The Name

Source

It's Not A Perfect World

While it's easy to assume, as Mr. Kenney suggests, that most parents only want the best for their kids, "the best" looks different to each set of parents on any given day.

Therein lies the problem.

While this is 2017, and it's easy to say that we should just accept everyone, regardless of race, creed or sexual orientation, a lot of people don't feel the same way, in spite of their claims to the contrary. They may feel as though they are very open individuals in terms of their belief system, but as soon as their children tell them they feel they are attracted to someone of the same gender or that they even might feel as though they are transgender, that openness goes out the window.

Individuals thrive when they feel safe, and Jason Kenney's implication that parents should know if their children join GSAs will put that safety into question. For instance, we have a pride prom - a prom where kids who identify as gay or are allies can go and dance and enjoy themselves without fear of anyone attacking them for enjoying themselves as their authentic selves - annually, and I know there are students who will doctor their form in such a way so that the words "pride prom" do not show up on it, so they can get their parents to sign it and they can go to the dance.

My heart breaks for those kids.

I'm by no means a perfect parent, but there is something to be said for letting your kid be who they feel they are, regardless of the gender of the person they are attracted to, or regardless of the activism they want to partake in. If your kid is safe, isn't that what counts?

The government needs to stay out of GSAs and allow kids to have the safety that such organizations offer.

Do some research, please, Mr. Kenney - for the sake of the kids in your province and beyond.

Safety First

Source

John Oliver And LGBT Discrimination

Questions & Answers

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • Kathleen Cochran profile image

        Kathleen Cochran 

        15 months ago from Atlanta, Georgia

        God bless every one of those precious lives. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, wehavekids.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://wehavekids.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)