Mr. Fraser: Well, Mr. Speaker, what kind of session would it be without me getting a little verklempt or misty eyed? I want to talk about my oldest son, Carson, who’s incredibly brave. He’s one of the strongest people that I know. It’s for people like him that we raise the pride flag. It’s because of the other brave people who paved the way for him to come out to the world. Because of him and those other brave people, they changed me. They inspired people like me to show us that God created us in His image, and He doesn’t make mistakes. Premier, how is your government protecting people like my son and trying to bring people together on the issues of gay rights rather than drive them apart for political benefit?

The Speaker: The Minister of Culture and Tourism.

Miranda: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I have to commend the member. I have known him for three years now, and before that, we’ve had the opportunity to converse. I know that he has come a long way himself in understanding and embracing and ensuring that not only his son but every single LGBTQ Albertan feels safe and secure, and for that, I thank him very much. I will say to the member that the members on this side of the House have always and will always continue to fight for every single LGBTQ Albertan and ensure that their rights are never taken away from them despite what others would like to see.

The Speaker: Thank you, hon. minister.

Mr. Fraser: Mr. Speaker, as a family of faith we raised our kids not to subscribe to organized religion but to find their faith in Christ and develop a relationship with Him that’s not based on traditions or boundaries. We taught our kids to love one another. I want to thank those in the government caucus, the United Conservative caucus, my independent friends, and the Alberta Party caucus that have supported my son and my family. And for those in this House that aren’t there yet, I hope that you get there. Like I said, I taught my kids to love one another. Premier, what is your government doing to bridge the political divides so that gay rights can flourish across the political spectrum?

The Speaker: The hon. minister.

Miranda: Thank you, Mr. Speaker and to the member for the question. You know, we have spent a lot of time going throughout this province and meeting Albertans in every single opportunity where pride celebrations are taking place but also ensuring that they feel safe in their schools, and that’s something that is extremely important. Unfortunately, what we have seen is the politicization of the issue of having GSAs in schools, for example, and that doesn’t help. We will not stand for that. What we will do is ensure that every single student in this province can feel safe when they go to school, and we’re going to make sure that any . . .

The Speaker: Thank you, hon. minister.

Mr. Fraser: Happy Pride Month to all Albertans, especially to the brave ones who are teaching us about love and acceptance; to my precious son Carson, my wife, Mishelle, my son Thaine, who loves and defends his brother; and to all proud families.

How does this government support families that are out and the ones that just need a little help getting there?

Miranda: Thank you, Mr. Speaker and again to the member for his very brave question. One of the things that we have been very clear about is that we will not stand for kids to be outed before they are ready. Everybody goes through a journey, and when they get there, some of us will struggle, absolutely, and may not be able to have these kinds of discussions. But what doesn’t help is having people in political power not having the conversations, not even wanting to have face-to-face meetings with the community. We understand the needs of these young people because we ourselves, from my own experience and that of a couple of my colleagues, have seen it first-hand.

 


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