Sophie York: Canada Ruling is an Attack on Parental Rights

Marriage-Alliance-Australia-Sophie-York-Canada-Parental-Rights.pngHere at Marriage Alliance, we have been vocal about the impact that marriage has on multiple areas of Australian society – and across the world. This week our spokeswoman Sophie York brought to light the latest societal consequences of redefining marriage in Canada, a country that legalised same-sex marriage more than a decade ago:

“We have heard time after time that there are no consequences to redefining marriage for ordinary Australians, yet we now have exactly the opposite from the courts in Canada.” 

Here’s what happened: Steve Tourloukis, who is of the Greek Orthodox faith, had submitted an application to the local school board, which would have allowed Mr Tourloukis to remove his children from school courses which presented LGBT sexual activity as a normal and healthy way to live out human relationships because they were in conflict with the religious values in which he was seeking to raise his children. The content Mr Tourloukis’ children would be exposed to is similar in nature to what is being presented in “Safe Schools” and similar programs around Australia.

When the school refused to accommodate Mr Tourloukis’ request, he sought assistance from the courts, asking them to recognise his rights in relation to the moral education of his children.  The school board objected, arguing that it could not accommodate religious beliefs which conflicted with education policy and that Mr Tourloukis’ request was impractical because sexual and gender diversity was “fully integrated” into the school curriculum.

The case was eventually picked up by the Ontario Superior Court, in which Justice Robert Reid upheld the school’s decision, setting a precedent that conforming to a school’s agenda is given more legal weight than parental rights.

As reported by The Australian:

The Superior Court upheld the decision of the local school board not to accommodate Mr Tourloukis’ request, noting it had supported the “values of inclusion and equality over individual religious accommodation.”

Justice Reid deemed this to represent a correct balancing of the conflicting imperatives in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Sophie York called out the ruling for what it truly is: an attack on parents’ rights, and a clear example of the societal consequences of legalising same-sex marriage. Sophie shared her views with The Australian:

“This ruling clearly shows the attack on parents’ rights and religious freedoms with parents of a student being told in no uncertain terms: ‘You have no place in public education if you do not agree’,” she told The Australian.

She said that, despite claims made by LGBTI activists, the ruling sent a “clear and unambiguous statement by the courts” that the consequences of redefining marriage went directly to the classroom.

“As the parents of Australia rightly raise concerns about what their children are being taught under the contentious Safe Schools program, we are seeing similar programs being made mandatory learning in education systems around the world where marriage has been redefined.”

Canada has given us a warning – it is up to us to keep Australia from making the same mistakes. Same-sex marriage advocates will be pushing to force same-sex marriage to be legalised without allowing regular Australians to see examples of how changing the definition of marriage in other countries has real consequences for every family. Regardless of what tricks they pull, Sophie York and Marriage Alliance will never cease fighting your right to have your say.

The silent majority has a voice, and we will continue to make sure your voice is heard.  And we will continue to highlight examples from overseas which demonstrate the consequences of changing the definition of marriage. No matter what, we will never cease fighting to defend marriage, to reveal the true consequences of same-sex marriage, and to protect the rights of all Australian citizens.

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