The government is withdrawing its subsidy for a Christian group named Hart van Homos which encourages celibacy among gay men after all, emancipation minister Jet Bussemaker has told MPs.
The minister’s u-turn follows pressure from ruling party MPs who argue the group is sending out the wrong message. The group’s mission statement says that its workers ‘opt for friendship without a sexual relationship.’
Last month it emerged that Hart van Homo’s had received government money via an umbrella foundation. At the time Bussemaker said she would not withdraw the grant, saying she was confident the organisation would not proscribe to gay Christians how they should live their lives.
Now, however, the minister has agreed to stop funding for the LCC+ foundation, which represents a number of organisations working to win greater acceptance for homosexuality within the Christian community.
Bussemaker has now asked the foundation to submit a new proposal for funding which excludes Hart van Homo’s.
‘This is a question of principle, not money,’ Labour MP Keklik Yücel said. ‘Should we be subsidising an organisation which conflicts with emancipation?’
According to Trouw, Hart van Homo’s is a unique project because it aims to boost the acceptance of homosexuality in strict Protestant communities. No-one would be forced to accept celibacy, project founder Herman van Wijngarden told the paper.
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