Canadians had a lot to say on social media after Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre claimed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was “demonizing” parents following recent rallies over LGBTQ+ school policies.
Trudeau took to X, formerly known as Twitter, on Wednesday with a strict message reminding people that transphobia, homophobia and biphobia have “no place” in Canada.
“We strongly condemn this hate and its manifestations, and we stand united in support of 2SLGBTQI+ Canadians across the country — you are valid and you are valued,” the Liberal Party leader wrote.
But Poilievre responded with his own thoughts on Friday afternoon, condemning Trudeau for how he “always divides to distract from all he has broken” in a post that’s been seen more than 1.5 million times.
“This time, he is demonizing concerned parents,” Poilievre penned. “Parents should be the final authority on the values and lessons that are taught to children. Trudeau should butt out and let parents raise their kids.”
Both comments come after thousands in cities like Ottawa, Halifax and Vancouver participated in protests and counter-protests regarding LGBTQ+ policies in Canadian schools.
This past summer, leaders in some Canadian provinces began announcing changes to school policies that would impact queer students, particularly those who are transgender or non-binary.
In June, New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs announced new changes to a protective policy for queer students. Those changes mean teachers in the province will not be required to use the preferred names or pronouns of transgender or non-binary students under the age of 16 without parental consent.
Saskatchewan Education Minister Dustin Duncan announced a similar policy change in August, where teachers must seek parental approval before a student under the age of 16 can change their names or pronouns.