Take Action! Ontario Needs Comprehensive Sex-Ed!

Posted on August, 21 2018 by Action Canada

It’s not a matter of opinion, it’s a matter of human rights.

On July 11, 2018, Ontario’s new education minister Lisa Thompson announced that an outdated 1998 sex-ed curriculum would be reinstated in Ontario. A lot has changed in the last 20 years: how we talk about consent, respect for LGBTQ+ people and families, and what happens online, just to name a few examples.

Are you a student, parent or educator negatively impacted by the Ontario government’s curriculum repeals? There are actions you can take!

1. Tell your school boards to support the 2015 curriculum!

Dozens of school boards in the province have already taken a public stance against curriculum regression. If you’re a concerned teacher, parent, student or member of the public, click here to tell your local school board to support the 2015 curriculum! 

2. Join the 519’s We Have Your Back campaign!

Click here to join the campaign and let your member of parliament know that you support the 2015 curriculum.

3. Are you a student or parent?

If your human rights are being violated by this roll-back, you can file a complaint with the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. To learn how, visit Justice for Children and Youth’s website, or download a PDF of the Sex-ed and Human Rights Info Sheet.

4. Are you a teacher?

If you’re a teacher concerned that teaching a 20-year-old curriculum will violate the Ontario College of Teachers’ professional standards, download our PDF on Professional Standards and Ethical Responsibilities to learn more and take action!

5. Buy a copy of Beyond the Basics

Support the teachers in your life: buy them a copy of Beyond the Basics, a 500-page resource and online community full of background information and activities on teaching inclusive sex-ed from a human rights approach.  Click here to purchase a copy today!

6. Call the “Snitch Line”

The provincial government launched a “snitch line” website to collect anonymous complaints about teachers who provide accurate and up to date sex ed. Let’s flood their page with complaints about the government’s decision to repeal the 2015 curriculum. Click here to send a message!

7. Learn more!

Access to sex-ed is a basic human right, here’s why:

Young people have the right to…

  • understand consent and learn how to identify, prevent, and challenge sexual abuse and assault;
  • live free from gender-based violence, including homophobia, and transphobia;
  • learn about the diversity of gender identities, gender expressions and sexual orientations within their classrooms, families, and communities;
  • access the tools that challenge discrimination, bullying, and harassment; and education and services that ensure their right to health!

Under Ontario Human Rights Law, educators and other responsible parties have a duty to be inclusive and take steps to maintain environments that protect and uphold human rights.

The Ontario Education Act, which sets the standards for how education is delivered in the province, requires that school boards, promote a positive school climate that is inclusive and accepting of all pupils, including pupils of any race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status or disability.

To learn more about human rights within Ontario’s education system, download our PDF on Education in Human Rights.

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