LGBT activists at a Christian university in California are demanding that the school remove clauses from its student conduct policy that they believe discriminate against LGBT individuals.
At a vigil held this week in support of former employee Mahesh Pradhan, who is suing the university for wrongful demotion and claims he was harassed and assaulted by colleagues who believed he was gay, a group of students delivered a letter to administrators at Azusa Pacific University that demanded four things, The San Gabriel Valley Tribune has reported.
The letter not only demanded a full investigation and action against the employees who allegedly harassed the former line chef but also demanded recognition of the LGBT student group Haven as an official university student group. The letter also demanded the “removal of clauses in the student handbook that discriminate against the LGBT students,” and that the school institute campus-wide LGBT training for its staff and incoming students.
Although students do not have to be Christian to attend APU, all students are expected to comply with “lifestyle expectations” outlined in the student handbook, the Undergraduate Catalog and “any additional policies related to living in the APU community,” according to the school’s website.
The school’s Student Standards of Conduct bars students from doing such things as jaywalking and hazing to engaging in overnight stays with members of the opposite sex. In sticking with traditional Christian teachings, the school’s policy also specifically bans same-sex relationships.
“Students may not engage in a romanticized same-sex relationship,” section 9 of the policy states.
Additionally, section 11 of the policy states that “[s]tudents may not engage in unmarried sexual behavior.”
“The university only recognizes the marriage between a man and a woman,” the document reads.
In a statement provided to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, APU spokeswoman Rachel White explained that “APU adheres to a traditional definition of marriage.”
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Samuel Smith