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Catholic teachers' union urged to withdraw from Pride parade

The group Parents As First Educators (PAFE) is calling on the Catholic teachers’ union to withdraw from participation in this summer’s World Pride Parade in Toronto.

In a release Monday, PAFE president Teresa Pierre announced a new petition, and urged members of the public to sign it.

“(We are) asking Catholics to demand the Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association (OECTA) not officially attend Toronto’s World Pride Parade…This event is inconsistent with what the Church teaches about homosexuality,” she wrote.

“Catholic Trustees need to step up and do their part to say the Pride Event is not suitable for families and not supportable for any Catholic organization. The Pride Parade breaks nudity laws and participants promote homosexual activity…”

“Catholic parents expect a Catholic teachers’ union to support the timeless teachings of the church on marriage and family.”

According to its website, the OECTA represents 34,000 teachers in the Ontario Separate School system.

The union was not immediately available for comment.

Earlier this month, trustees with the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) voted against a motion to write a letter to city council asking them to enforce nudity laws at this year’s Pride parade.

Trustees voted 16-6 against the motion, which was put forward by trustee Sam Sotiropoulos.

The TDSB has had a float in the parade since 1996 but some trustees said not enforcing the nudity laws put into question the family friendliness of the event.

“We are in the business of educating students. We are also in the business of protecting students,” Sotiropoulos said during the debate on his motion.