Protests and counter-protests regarding the LGBTQ+ community’s rights and representation in education are being planned across Canada this Wednesday, with tensions rising from a group named “1MillionMarch4Children” that aims to challenge the inclusion of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity programs in British Columbia’s public schools.

1MillionMarch4Children who oppose what they label as “gender ideology in schools” are being countered by at least 63 counter-demonstrations labelled “No Space for Hate.”

Rakied by LGBTQ+ advocate Sarah Worthman, the counter groups aim to show unified support for the LGBTQ+ community. 


Worthman, who has emphasised the significance of Canadians showing support for the LGBTQ+ community beyond annual Pride celebrations, highlighted the growing hostility and politicisation faced by the community and calls on all Canadians to show solidarity against a seemingly vocal minority that opposes LGBTQ+ rights.

The issue has even caught the attention of British Columbia’s Human Rights Commissioner, Kasari Govender. Labelling the anti-LGBTQ marches as “hate-fuelled,” Govender stressed that while peaceful protests are a democratic right, the human rights of the LGBTQ+ community should not be questioned. Reflecting on the alarming statistics, she mentioned that two-thirds of LGBTQ+ students feel unsafe in school settings compared to a mere 11% of their heterosexual counterparts.

Govender also emphasised the misconceptions surrounding children’s protection, saying, “Erasing LGBTQ2SAI+ people from our curriculum will not change your child’s identity, but it will make schools, and the LGBTQ2SAI+ people in them, less safe.”

Govender’s stance has also been supported by the B.C. Teachers’ Federation President Clint Johnston who expressed his concerns in a letter to B.C. Premier David Eby. Johnston sees these protests as part of a larger North American movement that uses ‘parental consent’ as a veiled expression for growing homophobia and transphobia.

Premier Eby also responded assertively, emphasising the importance of creating a secure environment for every student. He denounced any threats, hate, or violence against the 2SLGBTQIA+ communities. The premier’s sentiment was echoed by a statement from the City of Whitehorse, which highlighted its stance against anti-LGBTQ sentiments during the planned marches on September 20.