Catholic schools have developed a guideline in part as a reaction to the Dalton McGuinty government's anti-bullying legislation. (DAVE ABEL/QMI Agency)
TORONTO - Catholic school students in Ontario deserve protection from bullying based on sexual orientation, say trustees, but the publicly-funded education system will continue to teach children that chastity, marriage and procreation are the way to go.
And any student group that focuses on sexual orientation issues can be called a "Respecting Difference" club, ruled the Ontario Catholic School Trustees' Association, not a "Gay-Straight Alliance," a politically-charged name for Catholics.
The trustees say their faith prohibits bullying on any grounds, including people "of all sexual attractions and gender identities”, and have developed the guideline in part as a reaction to the Dalton McGuinty government's anti-bullying legislation.
The document insists that respect for students be pursued from a distinctly Catholic perspective.
"All actions involving human sexuality are morally assessed in reference to its two-fold meaning and purpose, mutual love of the spouses and an openness to life," the document says. "If a person acts in a way that goes against this meaning it is also viewed as an act against the virtue of chastity.
“This assessment is the same for all people, whether heterosexual or those with same-sex attraction."