Light rain

Steinbach, MB

10°c Light rain

Full Forecast

Local

The Carillon - ONLINE EDITION

Falk weighs in on Bill 18

By: Chris Gareau

Posted: 11/21/2013 10:29 AM

  • Print

Advertisement

Federal Conservative candidate Ted Falk shared his thoughts on bullying this week as part of a candidate profile with The Carillon commenting on Bill 18 anti-bullying legislation recently passed by the Manitoba government. The federal byelection for Provencher will be held on Monday.

The week, Nov. 17-23, has been recognized as Bullying Awareness Week.

Falk was initially scheduled to speak at the public hearings on Bill 18 legislation earlier this year but told The Carillon that didn't happen as he became busy with his Conservative nomination plans.

Falk says the bill was poorly drafted.

"We’ve all been the victim of being bullied or conversely and unfortunately been a bully to someone at some point in our life, and nobody likes it. So to me it’s a common sense thing that is an age-old problem. And I find it sad that we have to legislate anti-bullying as opposed to legislating being nice to people."

Falk said the lack of consequences for violations weakened the bill as well but he said his biggest concern with the bill was the inclusion of the term 'gay-straight alliance'.

"I don’t think it’s right to identify any special interest group into legislation including gay-straight alliance. Why didn’t they say that anybody could form a group? You know, based on how you dressed, based on other cultural issues: whether you’re a Mennonite or whether you’re a Francophone...they specifically chose to include gay-straight alliance and I think there’s an agenda behind that; and I disagree with using a bill under the guise of anti-bullying to promote a different agenda."

Steinbach Regional Secondary School student Evan Wiens attracted national attention as he stepped forward, identifying himself as a gay student, and advocated for gay-straight alliances. In a television interview, as the debate over the bill grew, Wiens was interviewed in front of the high school as other students walked past lobbing verbal abuse at him. While Falk acknowledged homosexuals do face bullying, he also suggested that particular incident may have been manufactured.

"Whether that was staged we don’t know," Falk said.

Asked if he meant the teens had staged the scene, Falk agreed.

"By the organizers, yeah," he said.

The issue of bullying remains important to Falk, he says.

"Bullying is bullying no matter against who it is, and I don’t think you need to make special inclusions like that – and to drive a different agenda. I think it’s sad, I think that bill would have resonated with people if they hadn’t confused the agendas."

  • Print

More Local News

  • William and Becky Pangman with three of their children, from left, William II, Wisdom and Ashton, at their Third Street home in Steinbach, only a block and a half away from where their home burnt down last November. The family wants to thank the hundreds who came to their rescue after they lost the roof over their head and many possessions.

    Family thankful for community support

    09/25/2016 9:00 AM
  • Community canvassing

    09/24/2016 9:00 AM

    If you would like to have a hand in creating a Canada Day masterpiece, opportunity knocks.

    A community mural is being created to celebrate Canada’s 150 anniversary next year and Steinbach residents will have the chance to paint one of 600 ...

  • Niverville annexation passes next hurdle

    09/23/2016 9:15 AM

    Niverville council has given second reading to two bylaws that would see 340 acres of land annexed from RM of Hanover.

    Council held a public hearing on the matter Tuesday evening during which they received several recommendations from the province on ...

Ads by Google

Electronic Copies

The Carillon single copy cover

Annual Subscription

Back issues available with an e-subscription

Subscribe to single copy
$1.50 each (includes tax)

September 22, 2016 copy now available

Read this week’s classifieds