Notley ‘concerned and very disappointed’ at UCP resolution on student gay-straight alliances

Premier Rachel Notley says a resolution backed by a majority of UCP members supporting parents’ right to be informed when their child joins a gay-straight alliance should be a wake-up call for those on the fence about the fledgling party.

Notley, in Calgary Monday to welcome giant pandas to the city’s zoo, said the signal sent by 57 per cent of the UCP’s membership in support of the controversial motion is that the party led by former Calgary MP Jason Kenney is not inclusive.

“This weekend he just set fire to a lake once again,” she said of the leader of Alberta’s opposition.

“Mr. Kenney created the UCP; he brought together a number of very extreme sections of small groups of people in Alberta.

“I am concerned and very disappointed that this new party has decided to focus on attacking these vulnerable groups when in fact that’s not aligned with Alberta’s values.”

The motion passed by members at the party’s inaugural convention in Red Deer over the weekend did so despite several key MLAs asking members to kill it.

Calgary MLA Ric McIver was joined by House leader Jason Nixon and Chestermere MLA Leela Aheer in a failed appeal to defeat the motion, with McIver warning members not to be called “the Lake of Fire party,” a reference to former Wildrose party candidate Alan Hunsperger, whose previously published opinion on the LGBTQ community was widely blamed for the party’s failure to win the 2012 Alberta election.

Despite a majority of members backing the motion that would require parents to be notified if their child joins a school club of a religious or sexual nature, Kenney said it won’t necessarily form a part of the party’s policy book ahead of next year’s provincial election.

”We don’t believe, and we will not ever take the position, that there should be mandatory notification. … We don’t have to (when) joining the press club, so why should they do it joining a GSA,” Kenny said Sunday.

”Guess what — I’m the leader and I get to interpret the resolution and its relevance to party policy,” he said.

Notley, however, said the new party showed its true colours by supporting the policy, regardless of its leader’s stance.

“Sometimes people show you who they are, and when they take the time to show you who they are, you should believe them, and that’s what happened this weekend,” she said.

Source: Calgary Sun