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Perth South maintains Pride flag policy following council meeting

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Perth South Township has decided not to alter its flag policy after an extensive council meeting held on Tuesday.

The discussion was centered on the flying of a Pride flag by the municipality during the first week of June, which drew complaints from some residents.

While one councillor voiced their opposition to what the Pride flag represents, the majority of the council voiced their support of the flag.

During the meeting, each councillor expressed their opinion on the township's current flag policy, leading to passionate and divisive statements.

Ultimately, the council decided to retain the existing policy, with a review planned for a later date.

Councillor Mark Bell, among those advocating for an early policy review, delivered a prepared statement opposing the Pride flag, highlighting concerns about drag queen story time for children, and transgender athlete participation in sports.

“By raising a flag we are inherently excluding others, which is why the flag policy need clarification,” said Bell. “My main objective and the goal is to fight for the innocence of our children. In my opinion what the Pride flag represents has shifted.”

Councillors Sam Corriveau and Jaime Martin expressed their support for the Pride flag and emphasized the importance of a safe and welcoming community.

“I want Perth South to be a safe and diverse community for all to live, and for me that is a piece of what the Pride flag is all about,” said Corriveau.

“Our community pole is here for us to support our members of our community, and as councillors our job is to make this community better,” said Martin. “To make it stronger, to make it more welcoming, to do everything we can to make it a safe space for all of the members of our community.”

Currently, the policy permits community flags to be flown for a week at a time.

Some councillors proposed extending this duration, however, a motion to do so was rejected, and the council agreed to conduct a review of the policy in 2024.

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