BC Liberal ad from Oct. 4, 2019 in The Light Magazine, a Christian publication out of Langley that frequently publishes homophobic and transphobic content. (Lightmagazine.ca)

Vancouver Pride Society bans BC Liberals from annual parade after ad controversy

VPS threatened the ban last week if action wasn’t taken against Chilliwack-Kent MLA Laurie Throness

The BC Liberals were formally notified Tuesday that they are not allowed to march in the 2020 Vancouver Pride Parade.

Vancouver Pride Society (VPS) executive director Andrea Arnot told The Chilliwack Progress of the decision made after last week’s demand that unless Chilliwack-Kent MLA Laurie Throness was removed from caucus or from his role as Child Care critic, the party would not be allowed at Pride.

• READ MORE: BC Liberals barred from Vancouver Pride Parade if Chilliwack-Kent MLA isn’t ousted

The VPS decision comes after Throness declared his support for continued advertising in a Langley-based conservative Christian magazine that has run homophobic and transphobic content.

Arnot said the BC Liberals were also told “that we look forward to hearing about their accountability plan to ensure all of their caucus members understand the harms of conversion therapy, as well as, that any forms of homophobia or transphobia have no place in Canadian society, especially not with elected officials.”

The VPS demand to the BC Liberal Party came on July 16, a day after NDP MLA Spencer Chandra Herbert similarly demanded Throness be ousted from caucus for advertising in “The Light” due to its anti-LGBTQ content.

Throness was one of 14 BC Liberal MLAs who spent a total of approximately $1,700 to advertise in the magazine. After the party was questioned about the advertising, a number of MLAs apologized, and BC Liberal Party leader Andrew Wilkinson said “there is no room in the BC Liberal Party for homophobia, transphobia, or any other form of discrimination. Going forward, we are taking immediate steps to ensure our advertising decisions reflect those values at all times.”

Throness, however, doubled down and said the magazine aligns with his “Biblical Christian” values.

Asked to comment last week, replied “no comment” via email on July 15.

Neither BC Liberal Party executive director Emile Scheffel nor anyone from the party responded to questions about what if any action was taken regarding Throness and his comments.

The Light magazine has published articles critical of SOGI-123 in schools, one article called medically assisted dying “barbaric,” and an October 2019 piece in the same edition as a BC Liberal ad criticizes a proposed ban on conversion therapy.

• READ MORE: NDP wants Chilliwack-Kent MLA removed from BC Liberal caucus for alleged homophobia

• READ MORE: VIDEO: Liberal bill outlaws conversion therapy for kids, non-consenting adults

Conversion therapy is pseudoscientific and discredited practice that aims to turn LGBTQ people straight.

“Conversion therapy is premised on a lie, that being homosexual, lesbian, bisexual or trans is wrong and in need of fixing,” Justice Minister David Lametti said in March after tabling the bill to ban the practice in the House of Commons.

– with a file from Canadian Press


Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
editor@theprogress.com

@TheProgress
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Roots & Blues announces ticket giveaway ahead of online festival

The festival is streaming free online this year, but those who pre-register can win passes for 2021.

Vernon business restores faith in humanity for houseboat fire victims

Community kindness leaves out-of-province father in tears of appreciation

WATCH: Lavington man chains himself to tree as crews clear space for child care centre

Crews began work clearing space for a new facility Thursday, Aug. 6

Rogers initiative ‘Step Up to the Plate’ to help Central Okanagan Food Banks

The initiative will deliver food hampers that will provide more than 1,343,000 meals for local food banks

British Columbians worried as end of COVID-19 rental supplement looms

Single mom struggles as supplement was her saving grace

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Penticton man wakes to wildfire, forced to evacuate

A wildfire sparked off the side of Highway 97 near Penticton on Thursday

Anti-gang cops probe Kelowna’s street-level drug trade over B.C. Day long weekend

CFSEU’s Gang Enforcement Team was deployed to Kelowna last weekend

Man allegedly wielding knife at Kelowna Superstore arrested

The 29-year-old Kelowna man has been released on strict conditions for a future court date

Visitors and non-residents entering closed remote B.C. First Nation’s territories

With limited resources, they say they don’t have any authority or power to enforce the closures

UBC loses appeal on Fisheries Act convictions

BC Supreme Court upholds order to pay $1.55-million fine

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Acclaimed B.C. actor Brent Carver passes away

Carver, one of Canada’s greatest actors with a career spanning 40 years, passed away at home in Cranbrook

Most Read