Tag Archives: london free press
Oakridge student saw a need and took action
HOMOSEXUALITY: Gay-straight alliances aim to combat at bullying encounter roadblocks
By SCOTT TAYLOR, The London Free Press
Pace, 18, is a student at Oakridge secondary school, where he created one of the largest and most successful gay-straight alliance groups in the Thames Valley District school board system.
The club was formed last April after Pace began to receive what he termed hateful comments online about his sexuality.
“It made me think that we didn’t have any groups where kids could go to get support and understanding.”
So he decided to create one himself.
Oakridge principal Grant McCumber was on board from the start, something Pace said was crucial.
“I spread the word through Facebook and other sites and there were messages in the school many times a day.”
Posters went up and some were torn down, but he continued undeterred. (full story via LFP)
Check out TMA’s Rick Mercer “report”
Rick Mercer returning to Centennial Hall
By JAMES REANEY, The London Free Press
Things will be pretty funny around Centennial Hall next April 26.
CBC TV funnyman Rick Mercer is returning to the downtown London venue on April 26 at 7:30 p.m., the hall has announced.
As with last April’s back-to-back dates at the hall, the 2012 performance helps raise funds for the London-based Bethanys Hope Foundation.
VIP tickets are already sold-out, the hall said Monday. Tickets are $62.50, plus applicable charges. [via LFP]
FOR TICKETS VISIT CENTENNIAL HALL BOX OFFICE
Sliding into a Tim Hortons restaurant for a photo opportunity between similar events in Blenheim and Kitchener, Hudak arrived to find a small protest brewing.
Still, smiling all the way, he quickly slipped past the two transgendered individuals protesting a controversial Conservative brochure slamming the Liberal party’s plan to change sex education curriculum.
“Tim can you comment about the hate propaganda your party is putting out against trans people?” shouted transgender activist Michelle Boyce, waving a sign that said “Equal Rights For Trans,” as the campaign team walked past and into the coffee shop to shake some hands.
The flyer, which has been distributed in the Toronto area, contains a list of lessons supposedly outlined in the 2011 curriculum, including “Cross dressing for six-year olds,” a concept the liberals deny.
“I was appalled by the flyer. I almost lost my dinner,” said Boyce, who has recently spoken out against the Trails End Farmer’s Market for banning a transgendered person from working one of the booths there. [full article]
Joe Fontana joining gay-pride celebration
By Patrick Maloney, The London Free Press
But in London, oh-so conservative by reputation, the big-L liberal politician in the mayor’s chair has embraced our event — and plans to march in Pride London Festival’s marquee parade this month.
That contrast between Rob Ford and Joe Fontana — two mayors whose political agendas share many similarities — could be proof, one local organizer hopes, that London’s establishment has evolved and become fully inclusive.
“I always felt (this) was a long time coming, when you look across the country,” said Ken Sadler, a retired city clerk who sits on the Pride London Festival’s board of directors. “I’m glad it’s over.
“It (offers) a great sense of belonging, I think, for the gay community.”
It’s believed Fontana will be the first London mayor to walk in the parade — and some say he’s the first to attend any part of the city celebration first held in 1982. [FULL STORY via LFP]
Gay school assembly criticized
By QMI Agency
SARNIA – A brief assembly hosted by the Gay Straight Alliance at a Chatham-area high school “crossed the line” and should only be allowed if other minority groups can do the same, says a trustee with the Lambton Kent District School Board.
David Goldsmith said he has no problem with any group promoting an understanding between itself and other students, but wants the privilege extended to other groups.
“I’m sure it was in the interest of diversity,” Goldsmith said. “So in the interest of diversity, when will Christian clubs be allowed to have an assembly?” he asked.
The school has not been identified.
Goldsmith said he’d received numerous calls from parents and teachers about the assembly.
“The impression I received is that they felt this group had stepped outside the parameters of the Education Act, which says no group can attempt to indoctrinate other students in a public school,” he said. [READ MORE VIA LFP]
A gay-straight alliance by any other name . . .
CATHOLIC BOARD: Teachers’ union comes out in support of the student organizations, which will be referred to by some other term
By JENNIFER O’BRIEN, The London Free Press
The Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association is part of a committee that plans to implement those alliances as early as September, James Ryan said.
“We are working with the Catholic community to ensure homophobic bullying doesn’t exist in schools and the committee has decided to establish (gay-straight alliances) with a Catholic name,” he said.
Ryan’s comments came after the union issued a news release calling on “everyone” to join its members in recognizing Tuesday as the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.
“(The association) is proud to stand in solidarity with those in the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and trans-identified community and their allies, in solid opposition to homophobia and transphobia,” said the statement, which was welcomed warmly by members of a London advocacy group.
“I think it’s really significant, and I send my kudos to the Catholic teachers’ association because what they’ve done — and it’s the first time I’ve seen any statement like this — is taken an important stand to the significance of this day,” said Daniel Pugh, chairperson of the Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia working group. [READ MORE via LFP]
Artists’ market adds to core
By NORMAN DE BONO THE LONDON FREE PRESS
An artists’ weekend market is coming to downtown London.
The former Red Apple store on Dundas St. will become the Metropolitan Market featuring London artists selling their wares every Saturday and Sunday.
“We are already seeing an Internet buzz about this new space. There has been a great response and it will be huge for artists,” and the downtown, said Savanah Sewell, who will manage the new market.
“It is very important to the artists’ community. Artists are always looking for a space to sell their work and this has been lacking.”