Kari Simpson, seen at a protest over immigration laws last year. (Black Press Media)

Kari Simpson, seen at a protest over immigration laws last year. (Black Press Media)

Culture Guard claims conspiracy over Langley meeting cancellation

The conservative group blamed CUPE and the NDP

The leader of a Langley-based conservative advocacy group has claimed a possible conspiracy shut down their planned meeting in the Township Civic Facility this week, not simple air conditioning repairs.

Culture Guard, best known for its opposition to the use of the SOGI 123 resources in local schools, was to hold a meeting Wednesday, Aug. 28 in the Fraser River Presentation Theatre, the main meeting room at the hall.

However, all meetings this week were cancelled due to repairs being done to the facility, the Township announced.

“Did a CUPE member decide to sabotage the venue?” said a Culture Guard Facebook posting on Tuesday. “The NDP and the BC Liberals are running scared. They don’t want you to be informed!”

The social media announcement also suggested that the RCMP should be called in to investigate.

The president of CUPE local 403, Sara Manchester, called the allegations to be a bit of a stretch.

“Nobody did it on purpose,” she said of the mechanical failures.

Work has been going on in the facility all summer, but the crews are outside contractors, not Township employees and CUPE members, Manchester said.

The local union isn’t even that political, she added.

“I couldn’t tell you who the NDP candidate was in Langley,” said Manchester.

The main NDP connection to the event seems to be a tweet by longtime Culture Guard opponent, and current Langley-Aldergrove NDP candidate, Stacey Wakelin. Wakelin called attention to the meeting when it was announced and was critical of the Township for giving space to the highly controversial organization.

Kari Simpson, a Langley resident and the primary spokesperson and organizer for Culture Guard, was to speak at the town hall meeting.

Culture Guard has courted controversy with its associations. At an anti-SOGI rally last year, members of the far-right group the Soldiers of Odin attended; the group was banned from Facebook earlier this year as a white nationalist group. Simpson has also claimed to have invited members of the Hells Angels to an anti-SOGI protest she held in Vancouver in 2018. It is unclear if any Hells Angels gang members actually attended that event, or not.

The Langley Advance Times attempted to contact Simpson for comment on her allegations.

READ MORE: Culture Guard meeting shut down due to Township repairs

READ MORE: Hells Angels invited to rally by anti-SOGI organizer