Just a short time after a ruling from the Court of King’s Bench in Saskatchewan paused his government’s gender and naming policy in schools, Premier Scott Moe is calling MLA’s back to the house to pass legislation.
The ruling from the court today effectively pauses a policy announced not long before the school year was to begin.
In essence, the policy prevents schools from allowing students to use a different name or pronoun without parental consent, if that student is under 16.
In a statement Premier Scott Moe says “Today, I asked the Speaker to recall the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, October 10 to pass legislation to protect parents’ rights.
Our government is extremely dismayed by the judicial overreach of the court blocking implementation of the Parental Inclusion and Consent policy – a policy which has the strong support of a majority of Saskatchewan residents, in particular, Saskatchewan parents.
The default position should never be to keep a child’s information from their parents.”
From the moment the policy was announced, there has been a lot of protest and a court case which brought about the ruling this afternoon.
Premier Moe had threatened to use the “not withstanding clause” of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms to make sure the policy will be implemented.
That provision allows governments to ignore the courts for a period of up to five years.
The government has said it was doing this in the name of protecting parental rights, but has so far not said publicly how they came to the decision to create this policy. There were no protests at the legislature demanding a change, and no public discourse on the matter until it was announced. The government claims to have the backing of a majority of parents, but with no public hearings, no consultation with educators and no evidence of people speaking up to have this policy implemented, its not clear what they are basing that on.
The court case will be back in front of a judge in November.