‘It was a mistake’ local school board member said after posting link to LGBT hate group on Facebook

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DENVER — A member of the Jefferson County school board is apologizing after sharing a link to an LGBT hate group on her public Facebook account.

On April 15th, Jeffco board member Julie shared a link to a page from SaveCalifornia.com, which encouraged parents to remove their kids from school to avoid participation in the “Day of Silence”.

The “Day of Silence” is a silent protest conducted by students across the country each year, designed to raise awareness of bullying, especially involving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.

“Seven out of 10 gay and lesbian students experience harassment just because of who they are,” said Dave Montez, with One Colorado.

Jeffco board member Julie Williams says when several parents asked her about the Day of Silence last week, she didn’t know what to tell them.

“I had contacted the district, asked them about it, and I never got a response back,” Williams said. “Then I saw that posting on Facebook.”

Williams is referring to a post from SaveCalifornia.com, urging parents to take part in a “Day of Silence” Walk Out. She says she saw the link on her newsfeed so she decided to share it.

Williams: “I didn`t read the article but I posted it thinking, alright, this will at least give parents information because I don`t think parents were informed.”

Kent Erdahl: “You posted something like that without knowing (what it said). That`s posting something without being informed as well, isn`t it?”

Williams: “Yes. Yeah, it was a mistake.”

Williams realized her mistake on Friday. During an interview with Chalkbeat Colorado, she says she learned that Save California was considered an LGBT hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

“I had no idea that this was such a controversial organization from California,” Williams said. “I was very, I guess, surprised and I feel very badly. I just apologize sincerely if I offended anyone.’

“The (SaveCalifornia.com) website, and the link that Ms. Williams shared, speak for themselves,” Montez said.

In the link, SaveCalifornia.com refers to the Day of Silence as “perverse indoctrination” alleging “They’ll teach children to support and embrace the unnatural and unhealthy homosexual-bisexual-transsexual agenda.”

In addition to apologizing and deleting her Facebook post, Williams says her views do not align with SaveCalifornia.com.

“I have plenty of friends, we have family members, that are gay or lesbian, and we welcome into our home wholeheartedly,” Williams said. “I love those family members and our friends. I certainly wouldn`t want to offend any of them. They have a right to be who they are and to choose what they want to do.”

Williams says she does not know who posted the link that she later shared, but she says she would “unfriend” them if she did.

(Photo: co.chalkbeat.org)
(Photo: co.chalkbeat.org)

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