Church and state

The provincial government authority responsible for providing services to the developmentally disabled has been getting guidance from what some may consider an eyebrow-raising source. Back in January, Laurie Geschke, the national president of REAL Women of Canada, was made a member of the 10-person committee charged with advising Community Living British Columbia's board of directors.

REAL Women of Canada, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this coming May, champions a number of social conservative causes - including a commitment to "promote, secure and defend legislation which upholds the Judeo-Christian understanding of marriage and family life" and "support the right to life of all innocent individuals from conception to natural death."

In an interview with Public Eye, New Democrat children and family development critic Nicholas Simons described Geschke's appointment to the committee as "quiet disquieting." Added Mr. Simons, "you know where she stands on every issue. And she's guilelessly open about it. But I don't think she fits in the mainstream of our society. And maybe that should be who's advising our board is someone who fits within the mainstream."

But the authority's acting communications director Roslyn Ingram says she doesn't see a conflict between Geschke lobbying and the activities of the advisory committee - which is presently focused on addressing transportation access issues for the developmentally disabled. "And if there was, we're aware what her position is. And she would have to advise us of the conflict."


Nothing like having someone from Real Women to give as a balanced argument . I say that with tounge in cheek. They seem to have no shortage of money, seem to want to keep women barefoot in the kitchen. Nick Simmons is being quite controlled is his comment. Advise to Community directors from a rep of that group should manage to upset a lot of women and men who support women.s causes.
Maybe she can join Kevin Kruger in prayer meetings

So this article is saying she has no qualifications for this position, except for being involved with REAL Women?

If so, this is very disturbing.

The BC Liberals do have a certain amount of pro-life and anti-gay grassroots that they are obliged to feed and water from time to time. These are mainly concentrated in the Okanagan and Fraser Valleys, but in a sense this is a province-wide, indeed nation-wide and international constituency that right wing political parties have cultivated for at least the last forty or more years.

With Gordon Campbell's BC Liberal Party there's been a kind of curious balancing act involved, where these people are most welcome but they are expected to mute their religious and sexual viewpoints, at least those who are in Cabinet, or are candidates. Every once in a while the line breaks, and something like this creeps out around the edges, reminding people of what's inside this particular coalition.

Simons put it diplomatically by saying that Geschke is "guilelessly open" about her opinions. As someone who has seen Geschke's rants in the suburban weeklies too many times, I would have to say that's a rather euphemistic description of her attitudes.

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