April 16, 2011
‘Homophobic’ charity gets £89,000 to support troubled teens
The Catholic Children’s Society have been awarded an £89,000 to “help and support [school] students” in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. The charity is known for its anti-gay views.
Conservative leaders of the Borough Council insist that the charity is well-equipped to provide counselling and support for teenagers. “I have no concerns that they will not carry out an excellent job,” said Councillor Christine Percival, the cabinet member for education, youth and children’s services.
A number of secular charities also applied for the contract. Percival claimed that the Catholic charity’s application was “way better than anyone else’s”
The Catholic Children’s Society requires counsellors to “uphold the Catholic ethos”. In 2007 the organisation withdrew adoption services nationally in response to new regulations outlawing discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.
“This decision beggars belief,” said Liberal Democrat council leader Stephen Knight. “Counselling services for young people have to address issues such as contraception, unwanted pregnancy and homophobic bullying and the appointment of a religious group to provide these services on behalf of the Council is totally inappropriate.”
“What on earth was the council thinking about in appointing such a partisan and dogmatic organisation to provide counselling and support services?” asked Terry Sanderson, President of the National Secular Society. “The Catholic Children’s Society went so far as to dump its adoption service because of the Government’s insistence that they consider gay couples as adopters. So what kind of reception would a gay child get if it came to one of their counsellors for advice?”
This is the second major public sector contract to be awarded to an anti-gay Christian group in the last week, after the Salvation Army won a £6 million contract to run services for victims of sex trafficking.
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