A group of concerned citizens in Abbotsford, BC have established a multi-day overnight camp to protest gender ideology in schools on a 24/7 basis.
Kanwaljit Singh, 41, is one of the activists who has been spending his week sleeping on a mat in a tent adorned by signs that read “Teach geography not pornography” and “Stop sexualizing our children.”
For over 90 days, the group has been protesting SOGI (sexual orientation and gender identity) curriculum in schools on a daily basis.
“Last Sunday at noon I took it upon myself to be here 24/7. I thought I would just be alone here. But all our brothers and everyone… they’re like, no, we’re not going to let you be alone here,” Singh recounted to True North.
Three to four people have been staying overnight in the tents at the intersection of South Fraser Way and Clearbrook Road, which is privately-owned land.
The group receives frequent honks of support, especially in the evenings which become quite lively with dozens more protesters and the occasional speaker.
Singh said that upwards of 100-200 people protest at the camp at different points throughout the day, with many of the supporters being local teachers who feel stifled within the education system, as well as Christians and Eastern Europeans. However, the core group of protesters are Punjabi.
“Many teachers come here and say, ‘we cannot go public, but we are with you,’” Singh said.
The individuals on-site said they are not paid to be there and they are not associated with any particular organization. The tents, generator, heater, hot beverages, portable washroom, signboards, and all other equipment were self-funded or donated by friends.
Singh is able to be at the camp full-time because he lost his software engineering job two months ago due to his earlier anti-SOGI activism during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20.
One of the group’s concerns is pornographic material in school libraries, and while they are not affiliated with any political party at any level, they commended Conservative Party of BC MLA Bruce Banman for calling attention to the issue in the BC Legislature by reading a lewd passage from a novel available at school libraries.
“I don’t care which party they are, as long as they’re against SOGI and they’re willing to say it publicly, we’re with them” Singh stated.
“It’s sort of becoming an indoctrination. Like rainbow flags all over the place. We’re not against it, but the amount it’s happening is disproportionate.”
The activists shared that some of their daughters have complained about biological men claiming to be women and gaining access to female-only washrooms.
“There should be a dedicated washroom for trans people like there is for disabled people,” Singh offered.
Canada’s federal laws around “conversion therapy” also concern the protesters.
“Our signs here could potentially get me locked up in prison for two years, because it might be stopping someone from transitioning. But on the other hand, anyone can come and tell my children that they should transition, there’s nothing stopping them from doing that.”
“My hands are being tied up at the back. And then someone has been given a boxing glove to punch me as hard as I could. That’s how it feels like,” said Singh.
Singh established the overnight camp on December 24th and plans to maintain the 24/7 presence until the 31st and perhaps into the new year.
Despite the group’s long-standing daily and now overnight presence, local media has ignored their activism.
“This is tyranny, what’s happening to children. And so what if I’m cold?” Singh said.
“If it makes a difference and I can create some public awareness, that’s why I’m here.”