CAMPBELL RIVER, B.C- Members of a non-profit advocacy group aimed at “defeating” SOGI 123 will be speaking at the Campbell River Community Center this weekend.

SOGI is an optional initiative developed by the B.C. Teachers’ Federation and the Ministry of Education. It’s purpose is to educate students and teachers on issues regarding gender and sexuality in school children.

Earlier this week, flyers were delivered around the city inviting residents to attend a “free info meeting” featuring guest speakers Kari Simpson and Jenn Smith.  

The flyers used the SOGI 123 logo and featured a parental advisory for explicit content warning.  

Thomas Longridge, superintendent of School District 72 said the meeting is not supported by, or connected with, anything the district is doing.   

Simpson is the founder of ‘Culture Guard’, a group from the Fraser Valley opposed to the SOGI 123 program.

City clerk Elle Brovold confirmed that the community space was rented by a Campbell River resident. She could not disclose the name of that resident.

A note directed to all parents on Culture Guard’s website says that SOGI is part of a political agenda to “undermine your relationship with your children, undermine societal values and to sexualize your children.”

Culture Guard members were recently present at an anti-SOGI rally in Vancouver on April 23, where they were met by LGBTQ advocates.

“Everyone is entitled to their free speech, but we feel both sides aren’t being accurately represented, we encourage people to do their own research” said Aftron Frost, board director of the Pride Society in Campbell River.  

“I can’t speak for why someone would be against respect and love.”

According to Frost, the North Island Pride Society will not be attending or protesting the meeting,