Sado-Masochism Might be ‘Sexual Orientation’ says BC Human Rights Tribunal

Thu Jan 5, 2006 - 12:15 pm EST

By Hilary White

VANCOUVER, January 5, 2006 ( - The BC Human Rights Tribunal is being asked to discover a new “sexual orientation.” The Vancouver Sun reported December 30, that a self-described “pagan” is accusing the Vancouver police of discrimination for refusing him a license to drive a limousine because of his involvement in the “bondage and discipline, domination and submission, sadism and masochism” (BDSM) underworld.

A Vancouver man, Peter Hayes, has accused the Vancouver police of illegal discrimination because of his involvement in BDSM. Hayes says that he lost a potential job as a limousine driver when police refused him a chauffeur’s permit and has taken his case to the Human Rights Tribunal.

The Tribunal’s Lindsay M. Lyster wrote an 18 page preliminary decision saying that the complaint can go forward. She said that while she did not completely understand the “precise nature of Mr. Hayes’ lifestyle, practices and preferences,” they ought to be investigated as to whether they fall under the definition of sexual orientation, and therefore of the protection of human rights legislation.

Lyster wrote that she did not understand the meaning “of the parties’ use of the term BDSM or other related terms.” Despite this, she believed “that Mr. Hayes suffered an adverse impact as a result of the respondents’ actions is, on the facts alleged, clear, as he was denied a chauffeur’s permit and lost the opportunity to work.”

The police department said, “In our submission, sexual orientation is separate and distinct from preferences or behaviours while engaging in sex. The legislature has not gone so far as to prohibit discrimination on the basis of preferences or behaviour.”

The issue of legal protection for “sexual orientation,” however, is a vexed one since when such legislation was introduced, a clear definition was deliberately withheld.

Gwen Landolt, a family advocate and head of Real Women of Canada, told that no definition of the term can be found in Canadian law so it can and is used to provide legal protection to any sexual proclivity.

Landolt said, “That was the whole point when the legislation began to appear. ‘Orientation’ was left open so as to include pedophilia, bestiality or anything anyone wants.”

“This has been the goal of the homosexual movement from the start: to remove from the Canadian criminal code everything pertaining to sexual morality, and their favorite method is to use the Human Rights Tribunals. These tribunals are not run according to the standards of evidence and due process as the normal courts,” Landolt said.

Lyster wrote that the Tribunal should employ the opinion of “experts” to decide if Mr. Hayes’ sexual interests could be considered an “orientation.” Given the willingness of experts to approve of most sexual activities that had heretofore been considered sick or dangerous to past generations, it seems to Landolt that one more sexual deviation is about to be given legal protection in Canada.

Landolt said, “The same thing happened in Ontario with the so-called ‘transgendered.’ They were refused OHIP coverage for their surgeries and they went to the Human Rights Tribunals. Now we have seen it with the swinger’s clubs in Montreal, and previously with child pornography. You name it.”

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