The BCTF has filed a human rights complaint against Chilliwack school trustee Barry Neufeld who started a campaign against LGBTQ youth and made controversial statements online.

BCTF files human rights complaint against B.C. school trustee over LGBTQ comments

Chilliwack school trustee’s ongoing vitriol towards transgender youth and campaign against LGBTQ spurs claim

Chilliwack’s most controversial school trustee is up against it again as the B.C. Teachers’ Federation (BCTF) and the Chilliwack Teachers’ Association (CTA) have filed a complaint with the BC Human Rights Tribunal.

The BCTF complaint says that while Barry Neufeld claims he does not “hate” transgender children, “his statements subject transgender people to hatred.”

Neufeld’s ongoing social media and real life campaign against the LGBTQ community in general and, more specifically, the sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI 123) curriculum spurred the complaint.

In the past, Neufeld has called himself a prophet for his stance against the gay community.

• READ MORE: Chilliwack school trustee calls himself a prophet

Neufeld has referred to supporting transgender children as “child abuse” first as a Facebook post, then at a speech on Nov. 21, 2017 at an event run by a conservative anti-LGBTQ group out of Langley called “Culture Guard.”

Neufeld’s repeated comments against SOGI has led to protests at the school board office, and for the board to ask for his resignation, something he declined to do.

• READ MORE: Chilliwack board of education asks Neufeld to resign

“Here is my prophecy to the Church,” Neufeld said in another Facebook post, something that forms one part of the complaint. “If you don’t get off your duffs and push back against this insidious new teching [sic], the day is coming (maybe it is already here) when the government will apprehend your children and put them in homes where they will be encouraged to explore homosexuality and gender fluidity.”

At the school board’s meeting on April 10, Neufeld addressed the BCTF/CTA human rights complaint, stating that he was supported by Chilliwack MLA John Martin and Chilliwack-Kent MLA Laurie Throness.

“The good news is our meeting with our two MLAs who are getting a lot of calls about me,” Neufeld said. “I’m thankful that I have the support of both Chilliwack MLAs.”

Indeed, Throness has repeatedly called Neufeld’s anti-LGBTQ campaign “brave” and the MLA has defended Neufeld’s refusal to respond answer questions or provide comment to The Progress.

Martin, however, explained to The Progress that to serve his constituents he needs to consult and work with different levels of government, so he does not put forth any opinion about elected officials in other branches.

“As the Member of the Legislative Assembly for Chilliwack I make it a point not to support or oppose any of my elected colleagues be they councilors, Members of Parliament, school trustees or the Mayor,” Martin said Thursday.

According to the filing from Jan. 29 with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal, the BCTF and CTA seek an order stating Neufeld has breached the human rights code, an order that he refrain from continuing to do so, and an order of payment to a non-profit organization that advocates for LGBTQ youth that works against discrimination.

“When viewed objectively, taking account of the context and circumstances, Trustee Neufeld’s statements are likely to expose transgender individuals to hatred,” the complaint alleges.

“Trustee Neufeld made repeated statements exposing transgender individuals, their families, and teachers who provide an inclusive supportive of transgender students, to hatred. Even after he purported to offer an apology, Trustee Neufeld made further hateful statements.”

The BCTF quietly made the complaint back in January without any public announcement, they say because they did not want to give Neufeld any “more mic time” during that period when the alt-right Culture Guard group was organizing events.

Grievances against Neufeld have also been filed by the union alleging breaches of the collective agreement by the school district as employer.


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Decision on Burns Lake’s workforce camp “pending very soon”: Coastal GasLink

Meetings to discuss new camp location postponed due to wildfire situation

B.C. parents leery of HPV cervical cancer vaccine

Provincial registration uptake among lowest in Canada

Municipal spending outpaces population growth 4-fold in B.C.: report

Canadian Federation of Independent Business has released its annual operational spending report

Northern Health set to take pulse of region’s heart health in new consultations

Fort St. James’ consultation will take place Oct. 11

No end in sight for B.C. labour shortfall: study

Retiring baby boomers causing demographic labour pool shift

Watch out for Pavement Patty: Drivers warned outside B.C. elementary school

New survey reveals unsafe school zones during 2018 back-to-school week

Canada signs global pact to help rid world’s oceans of abandoned fishing gear

The federal Fisheries Minister says it’s a ‘critical issue’

GOP pushing forward for Kavanaugh, accuser wants ‘fairness’

Kavanaugh has denied al allegations of sexual misconduct

Tent city campers now allowed to stay in B.C. provincial park

Contrary to earlier reports, Ministry of Environment says there is no deadline for campers to leave Greater Victoria camp site

Former VP of lululemon joins B.C. cannabis cultivation facility

Kerry Biggs will be the Chief Financial Officer of True Leaf, in Lumby

Could cannabis help keep people in B.C. on treatment for opioid addiction?

People on opioid agonist treatment face lower risks of overdosing, BC Centre on Substance Use says

Northwest B.C. high school student lands role in Monkey Beach

The novel by Haisla-author Eden Robinson is being filmed in Kitimat and Kitamaat Village

Around the BCHL – Trail Smoke Eater grad to captain NCAA Michigan Tech Huskies

Around the BCHL is a regular look at the BCHL and goings-on throughout the junior A world.

Thieves escape after man claims his wife is giving birth

RCMP searching for suspects in brazen daytime break in

Most Read