When I heard that one of our school trustees had posted (on Facebook) another anti-SOGI resource, I am sad to say I was not surprised.
I was shocked, however, when I found the post by Trustee Heather Maahs and examined the source. Family First New Zealand is an international extremist organization whose stated values include seeking the abolition of “no fault” divorce (and placing the law on the side of the party seeking to remain married), that single parent and step-parent households cannot be considered functional or official family units, and that LGBTQ2+ households arise from “dysfunction.”
I asked Ms. Maahs to clarify if she reviewed the organization’s mission, values, and goals before sharing their literature.
Despite having replies for many others, she never addressed my concerns and chose not to distance herself from these values. She stated that opposition to her post was anti-Christian, but most Christians I know would never align themselves with these statements. Not even those with concerns about SOGI 123.
I am disappointed this is how Ms. Maahs views the “family unit.” Surely, even those who have lingering concerns about the content of SOGI 123 can see why even suggesting this resource from her official account is harmful and hurtful to many families who have LGBTQ2+ members, step-parents, and one parent?
In our quest to understand one another and function in an open society with many perspectives, let’s not turn to extremism.
Families come in all shapes and sizes, and they all deserve to be safe and respected in our community.