Kari Simpson, seen here at an anti-SOGI rally. (Black Press Digital)

B.C. parents riled after son’s Halloween photos used in anti-SOGI speech

Culture Guard’s Kari Simpson has been using a former student’s photo in presentations.

A controversial Langley anti-SOGI activist used photos of a former Langley student in a presentation, incorrectly claiming students were “in drag” frequently in B.C. schools.

Kari Simpson of Culture Guard gave a presentation in Coquitlam Wednesday. It was recorded on the group’s Facebook Page.

Simpson used the photos of at least two students from a Langley high school in the presentation.

“This is how they go to school,” Simpson told her audience, incorrectly claiming that there are no longer dress codes in schools.

“If they want to dress up in drag, as drag queens, they’re allowed to,” she said. “Every day.”

Simpson told the Advance the photos were used with permission.

“Actually I talked to one of the kids months ago about the posting, and he said, ‘Go ahead, do whatever,’” Simpson said.

The conversation came in the context of a dispute on social media between the student and another person.

The former student’s parents are upset about the inclusion of the photos in the Culture Guard presentation. They were contacted by a teacher at the school who had seen one of the Culture Guard presentations that included the photos.

“She [Simpson] takes a lot of things out of context,” said Cliff Empey, the father of Cameron, one of the students in the photos.

“I’m kind of outraged,” said Cathy Empey, the student’s mother.

One of the pictures was taken on Halloween, and the other was taken at a Pride event, Cathy said.

“They don’t dress like that at school,” she said.

The Empeys are calling for Simpson to stop using the photos and to issue a public apology.

“We’re looking into the lawyer route,” said Cathy.

The family supports the SOGI 123 program and has spoken to B.C. Parents for Inclusivity, a local group founded by Stacey Wakelin about the issue.

Simpson was asked if she knew the photos were from Hallowe’en.

“That’s not what I understand,” Simpson said. “And regardless, it’s not what schools are for.”

She said she’s had no contact with the student or family since her video was posted.

Langley School District does have a dress code, referred to as “dress guidelines” on the district’s website.

“Clothing should demonstrate a respect for the school community,” the guidelines read in part. “Clothing should meet standards of suitability that are typical of an office workplace and should not be offensive to others.”

The guidelines also ban any clothing that promotes alcohol or drugs, encourages sexism, racism or bigotry, and bears direct or indirect messages related to violence, gang culture, sex, or pornography.

The district’s code of conduct also forbids “discriminatory conduct on the basis of race, colour, ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, political beliefs, and age.”

“Discriminatory conduct includes publishing or displaying anything that could discriminate against another based on accommodation, service and facility, or expose them to contempt or ridicule, on the basis of the above grounds,” says the code of conduct.

The presentation focused on Simpson’s claims about Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI123) a set of materials in use by B.C. schools.

Simpson and her conservative group have protested against SOGI numerous times around the Lower Mainland and farther afield around the province.

She recently claimed to have invited the Hells Angels to an anti-SOGI protest in Vancouver, saying members of the outlaw motorcycle gang were parents too.

READ MORE: Hells Angels invited to rally by anti-SOGI organizer

Just Posted

Couple home safe after COVID-19 lockdown in Peru

Cortney Pitts and Maxime Patenaude “won the lottery” to get to come home from Peru.

Back in print

We are pleased to announce that the April 9 issue of the Pioneer will be available in print.

Foodbanking in the time of COVID-19

Local food bank needs are high, but Lawrie Mack said: “there is hope to counter the gloom.”

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

‘Hold our line’: 29 new cases of COVID-19 announced in B.C.

Saturday’s number of new cases marks the lowest in weeks.

Two inmates found positive for COVID-19 at federal prison in B.C.; other tests pending

15 staff self-isolating waiting results, refusal to work notice sent, says correctional officer

Critic, workers’ group ‘disappointed’ Trudeau chose Amazon to distribute PPE

Amazon Canada said in an email to The Canadian Press that it is working with Canada Post, Purolator

Full World COVID-19 update: National Guard collect ventilators in New York; Spain, Italy improve

Comprehensive coronavirus update with news from around the world.

Two people fined after B.C. police spot online ads re-selling 5,000 surgical, N95 masks

Police confiscated the masks, being sold at inflated prices, and now working with Fraser Health

General exposure to public low after inmate tests positive for COVID-19: Interior Health

The Okanagan Correctional Centre inmate is receiving appropriate care

Sex workers face new risks during COVID-19 pandemic

‘Desperation has kicked in’ for vulnerable, undocumented workers unable to access help

Unclear if Cowichan couple refusing to self-isolate will face penalty

No fines or charges have been laid to date, including Cowichan couple who won’t self isolate

Most Read