Religious leader Dr Ferdinand Nicholls is not accepting the claim by Minister of Education Kay McConney that there was no gender-neutral bathroom signage at the St Philip Primary School last week.
In fact, he said he was “offended” by the explanation given by the minister when claims about the signs went public.
Last Thursday, a voice note circulating on social media suggested that the school had gender-neutral bathrooms and new signs had been put up on the bathroom doors to indicate this. However, the Education Minister dismissed this as an “outright lie” and reiterated that there had been no change in policy relating to “transgender, sexual fluidity or identifying in any different ways”.
“Those are conversations that have not been had and this Government and this ministry and this school has no interest whatsoever in foisting any of this onto the parents and the children of this country,” she added.
The school’s principal, Pamelatta Bhamjee had also sought to explain that the European Union had given the school a number of signs for different areas, including the bathrooms, but there was no change to bathroom designation or usage.
However, Reverend Nicholls insisted that Barbadians are not “idiots”.
“I was offended to hear the minister speak of people who engaged in the matter last week as liars. I know parents from that specific school who saw the signs and who took pictures of the signs and who sent them to me. So don’t insult the intelligence of our people and come to them in the most disingenuous manner in the way you speak as though you are educating children. We are big adults, speak to us in an amicable manner, and we will have a discussion with you, but don’t come to us as though we are idiots, this country is far more informed,” he said.
“We know what President Joe Biden is saying, we know what the United States is saying, we know what the European Union is saying, and we know what the World Economic Forum is saying concerning our children and the implementation of a certain agenda. We know, so don’t come to us with this rubbish,” he contended.
The ordained minister addressed the matter on Tuesday as he delivered remarks at a press conference held by the Watch Out My Children group to announce plans for a march and rally on parental and child rights, with specific reference to the Child Protection Bill and the School Nutrition Policy. (AH)