Taking pride in the WCDSB’s LGBTQ2S+ community
The Wellington Catholic community relies on trustees for representation and advocacy. During the last two years of severe challenges and loss for our students, staff, volunteers, and their families, members of the LGBTQ2S+ community received some much-needed support and advocacy from their representatives.
I believe that recognizing PRIDE month – as with all month-long celebrations of culture, communities, and peoples – and the flying of the PRIDE flag, are clear visible signs for the Board’s LGBTQ2S+ community that they are valued and their many contributions are to be celebrated.
“By flying the flag, we are not making a statement about our divergence from the teaching of the Catholic Church with regard to sexual morality. Sexual morality is not the issue. What is at issue is that LGBTQ+ youth are much more likely to do self-harm or take their life than their heterosexual counterparts. Every instance of bullying and abuse towards a LGBTQ+ youth increases the likelihood for serious and/or tragic consequences that were certainly avoidable.” – Loretta Notten
Advocating for those most in need of a voice
The role of a trustee is one of representation and advocacy, especially for those most in need of a voice around the board table. We are meant to stand up and call out when we are failing in our mission – not defend that failure and attack those who point it out.
I have always, and will always, advocate for programming, policies, and budgets that reflect our Board mission and seek to make real, Catholic social justice principles of equity, solidarity, and the inherent dignity of every person.
We are “supporting an inclusive learning environment rooted in the love of Christ”. This is what differentiates us as an education system and should drive the decisions we make to support our student’s success and well-being.
Should I be elected Trustee on October 24th, I would seek to create different accessible means to both keep the community informed and hear from community members – parents, students, staff, constituents, and local education partners – on an ongoing basis.
No one expects trustees to have all the answers – but, they do expect them to ask the hard questions of staff, to listen and respond to the needs of constituents, shine a light on inequity in need of action, and propose and advocate for change which enables the success and well being of every student.
Our Catholic schools are meant to be safe, caring spaces where students can thrive – mind, body, and spirit – and find meaning and value in their lives. Our mission and faith are clear. A mission that is ultimately made real – or not – by the decisions of its leaders.