Birmingham school LGBT protests permanently banned

As reported by the BBC , protesters have been permanently banned from demonstrating against LGBT inclusive education outside of a Birmingham primary school

A High Court judge ruled in favour of an exclusion zone to remain around Anderton Park, in Birmingham, which has been targeted by protesters for months.

The protests had an adverse effect on pupils, residents and staff, leading to 21 teachers being treated for stress, Mr Justice Warby said.

The protests at the school in Balsall Heath aimed to stop LGBT relationships education, with many parents and activists claiming it contradicts their Islamic faith and is not “age appropriate”.

October’s five-day hearing at the city’s Priory Courts heard there were further “untrue” and “harmful” allegations made about the school on social media, and how a visiting imam had claimed to parents there were “paedophiles” inside the school.

Other false claims included that the school had a “paedophile agenda” and staff were “teaching children how to masturbate”.

“None of this is true,” Mr Justice Warby said as he handed down the ban at Birmingham Civil Justice Centre. “None of the defendants have suggested it was true and the council has proved it is not true.”

The lessons had been “misrepresented by parents”, he said, adding the school does not promote homosexuality and seeks to weave the language of equality into everyday school life.

Since June protesters have gathered just outside the exclusion zone.

In the hearing last month, the city council argued an interim injunction should be extended beyond school gates and made permanent.

Birmingham City Council said the noisy protests at the school gates were disrupting lessons and meant children were unable to use the playground.

The council maintained the court action was in response to campaigners’ behaviour, not the issue of the protests.

The prior injunction named lead protester Shakeel Afsar, who does not have children at the school, his sister Rosina and Amir Ahmed, all of whom contested the need for a legal injunction.

You might also like...  Bristol school in special measures after failing to improve

Mr Justice Warby directed that the three named defendants should be liable to 80% of those costs, which the court heard have yet to be calculated.

The judge said the reason the award was not in full was because part of the council’s claim – for an injunction on the making of abusive social media posts against teachers – had been unsuccessful.

Mr Afsar said he was “bitterly disappointed with the decision of the court”.

Speaking after the ruling, head teacher Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson said staff would be “over the moon”.

“We knew it was misrepresented and that was the frustration when you are trying to go about your daily business as educators and when people say things about you that are not true, that is very difficult,” she said.

“It has been awful, but my staff are unbelievable and parents are unbelievable and the children of Anderton Park are incredible human beings and we are a strong school and every single person is part of that strength.”

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or connect with us on LinkedIn!

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*