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Booklet tells parents to 'prevent' homosexuality

By Shi Yingying (China Daily)

08:44, September 07, 2012

Families of gay men and women in China have expressed their anger at a sex education booklet given to parents of teenagers that describes homosexuality as a type of "sexual deviance".

About 50,000 copies of Parents, Please Walk Your Children Through Puberty have been distributed in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang province, since last year.

The book is designed to aid parents whose children are going through adolescence. It was jointly published by the Hangzhou Institute for Educational Research and Northeast Normal University Press.

But parents of gay children have complained about the booklet describing homosexuality as a type of "sexual deviance" and calling on parents to "prevent" it.

One passage in the book reads: "Because homosexuals are not accepted by prevailing social customs and moral standards, they tend to be anti-social and eccentric."

On Aug 27, 18 mothers of gay children wrote an open letter to the Hangzhou education bureau, which is responsible for the institute, calling for the booklet to be immediately recalled, its distribution stopped, and the parts about homosexuality to be revised in its second edition.

"They (parents of gay children) are in a better position to protest the book than LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) right groups, as it was made for them," said Hu Zhijun, a staff member at the China branch of the gay rights group, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays.

He said Hangzhou's sex-education booklet is not unique in China, and many teaching materials contain wrong information about gay people.


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