(Scroll down for 06/24/11 update) Canada’s official party of opposition has voted unanimously to oppose tax-exempt charity status for ex-gay groups such as Exodus Global Alliance.
The federal New Democratic Party, better known simply as the NDP, adopted the resolution at its convention in Vancouver, BC, last weekend. Delegate Michael McLaughlin introduced it thus:
Delegates, an investigation published in September 2010 by [the] LGBT news blog Slap Upside The Head revealed that Exodus Global Alliance, an ex-gay organisation, enjoys registered charity status with the Canada Revenue Agency. Ex-gay organisations claim that gay, lesbian, and bisexual people can be made straight. They take advantage of LGB people, often in vulnerable family situations or at grips with depression and self-hatred, and browbeat them—saying that LGB people never live happy lives, that we are unhealthy and unwhole, and that we never experience love and that the only hope lies in their therapies. […] We see that they are selling snake oil with benefits given to them by the Canada Revenue Agency at present.
Exodus Global Alliance is based in Toronto, ON, and proclaims that “change is possible for the homosexual through the transforming power of Jesus Christ.” It is partnered with but organizationally separate from the US-based Exodus International, whose president, Alan Chambers, sits on the board of both.
The current government of Canada is Conservative and enjoys widespread religious support. In May this year, the NDP all but wiped out the more centrist Liberal Party to become the official opposition for the first time in its 50-year history.
Update: Here is the full text of the NDP resolution to deny ex-gay organizations charity status:
6-12-11 Resolution on Ex-Gay Associations
Submitted by the NDP Federal LGBT Committee, Quebec Section
Be it resolved that the New Democratic Party call on the Government to immediately remove any charitable status currently enjoyed by “ex-gay” organizations and to see to it that according to this status to such organizations in future be prohibited.