A bizarre rumour that school children are to be injected with a "serum to make them gay" has become the centre of an unusual controversy in a Canadian municipal election.
The campaign trail in the city of Burnaby, British Columbia, has become embroiled in the peculiar row following claims that one party was spreading the rumour among residents, it has been reported.
A school trustee with the Burnaby Citizens Association told Burnabynow that he was informed of the rumour while out canvassing for the elections.
Harman Pandher said the rumour had been spreading among the city's Madarin-speaking community.
He said: "It was pretty unbelievable that a rumour like that would be out there."
BCA school board candidate Katrina Chen told The Province she was informed of the rumour by a person who had allegedly been told it by a Burnaby First Coalition volunteer.
BFC mayoral candidate Daren Hancott has categorically denied any person within his party was responsible for the rumour.
"I've talked to all of our candidates. I've talked to as many supporters as I could," he told CBC News.
He went on to say: "Nobody knew what was going on. I’m still trying to figure out what’s going on here and what it means but still no further information."
In 2011, the Burnaby School district adopted policy 5.45 in a bid to support gay and transgender students and tackle homophobia, according to Yahoo Canada News.
While the policy is the same as any other sexual equality framework, a group called Burnaby Parents Voice campaigned against its adoption.
A number of former members of the group are now running for the BFC, it has been reported.Reuse content