Vancouver lawyers step up for LGBTQ students in Merritt

By Greg Fry
March 5, 2018 - 3:02pm Updated: March 5, 2018 - 4:47pm

MERRITT — A pair of Vancouver lawyers are stepping up for LGBTQ students in Merritt following a recent city council decision to refuse their request for a rainbow crosswalk.

A rainbow crosswalk is commonly seen as a symbol of acceptance for members of the LGBTQ community.

Kyla Lee says she first learned about the story on Twitter last week and immediately offered up a parking lot she owns downtown. She adds she's not impressed with council's decision.

"These comments like we don't condone this lifestyle or purport to understand it. I found those very troubling and I think those types of comments are very discouraging to youth, particularly people who are dealing with questions about their sexuality or dealing with coming out and what a huge step that can be for some people," she says.

"I really wanted to do the right thing. If the city council wasn't going to do it then I have the opportunity to do this and to me it's important to do the right thing."

Lee says another Vancouer lawyer, Paul Dorosehenko, owns another parking lot next to hers and he's also offering his up for the cause.

She says the parking lots are very visible and she doesn't believe she'll need a permit to paint the parking lot.

Lee adds she hasn't spoken to any of the students though she has spoken with the assistant superintendent of District 58 and hopes to get it painted as soon as possible.

So, what's the goal?

"I hope the students who wanted this, the people who want this to happen in Merritt, will see their dream come true," she says.

"And I hope it will also send a message not just to Merritt city council but to anybody else who's opposed to this in Merritt that this is something the community wants and the community members, the people who contribute to the economy by paying property taxes, are in support of this and if council isn't going to step up, the community will step up in their place."

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