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Sicamous council unable to support proclamation request without sponsor

Council bucked procedure for International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia in 2023
Sicamous council opted to follow policy, or amend it as necessary, before proclaiming May 17 as International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia locally, despite having done so last year with the Gay Pride flag raised at the district office. (DOS-Facebook)

Sicamous council wants their ducks in a row before agreeing to proclaim May 17 as the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia locally.

Quebec organization Fondation Émergence, whose mission is to educate and raise awareness of the realities of LGBTQ+ people, submitted the request at the April 10 meeting, asking that a rainbow flag be raised that day, and a resolution passed in recognition.

Deputy corporate officer Sarah Kyllo said that the district does have a proclamation policy in place, though added it’s not always followed. It does, however, state that whoever is submitting a proclamation request needs to have local sponsorship, which this one does not.

“It’s probably good to follow policy and wait for some local group to support this,” Coun. Malcolm Makayev said. “To have local contact.”

Coun. Pam Beech asked for more clarification on the process required for such things, such as recognizing Gay Pride, which Sicamous currently does not.

“Is that something that we wait for the community to bring forward before we would go down that route?”

Kyllo explained that any councillor can bring forward a notice of motion for council approval. As far as this request, it has followed the correct procedure of written correspondence that comes to council for a decision, and added that the current policy can be amended to not require local sponsorship if they so choose.

Council generally agreed with Makayev about following procedure, even if they do change it first.

“I agree it should be done via our policy, because if we start ignoring it, then were is it going to end?” Coun. Ian Baillie pointed out. “I think it’s just good practice.”

Council agreed to leave the request until there is a sponsor, despite having officially recognized the day in 2023.

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