Amid the controversy sparked by a recent ad in the National Post, Tim Hudak's PCs have waded into the sex education debate with a flyer that suggests the Toronto District School Board's (TDSB) anti-homophobia curriculum encourages "cross dressing for six year-olds."
The pamphlet, which is authorized by the CFO of the Ontario PC Party and is being distributed in Brampton area ridings, quotes liberally, which is to say out of context, from the TDSB's Challenging Homophobia and Heterosexism curriculum resource guide, and makes references to "gender bending" exercises, "sexual diversity kissing booths" and students coordinating their own gay pride parades.
Take a look at it here or at the end of this article.
The pamphlet also features quotes from a recent CTV broadcast charging McGuinty's government is "purposely keeping parents in the dark" about the TDSB's curriculum as it relates to LGBTQ issues.
"Don't want this for your kids?" the PC pamphlet asks. "Parents: have your say. On October 6 vote against the McGuinty agenda."
Reached on his cell phone, PC party spokesperson Derek Tupling could not say if the pamphlets were being distributed in more than just Brampton where the PCs are locked in a number of tight races - and are dealing with the embarrassment of sexual assault charges against the husband of one of their high profile candidates.
At one point, Tupling tried to distance the PC party from the pamphlet, albeit half-heartedly, saying he would need a couple of
hours to track down whether or not the campaign literature was authorized by the CFO of the party. Tupling was busy organizing an event in Windsor when reached this morning.
But he seemed familiar enough with the bits in the flyer about the McGuinty government "keeping parents in the dark" to offer that "it's absolutely true" that the TDSB guide tells teachers not to inform parents about gay positive education.
Not exactly. The TDSB resource guide recommends keeping parents informed about equity practices in schools through newletters but stresses that sending letters to parents asking their permission to teach LGBTQ issues "could be construed as a discriminatory practice."
And that it contravenes the board's human rights and equity policies.
With a new poll showing the PCs now neck and neck with the LIbs, the party seems to be focusing on wedge issues to attract votes in the socially conservative and heavily ethnic 905 ridings, where their federal counterparts did well in the last election, but where Ontario PC fortunes seemed to be waning among new Canadians after Hudak characterized the Libs' tax credit for businesses who hire immigrants as an "affirmative action program" for "foreign workers."