The Canadian government has stopped all funding to an anti-gay group working in Uganda until the organization is thoroughly investigated by officials, The Canadian Press reported.
The organization, Crossroads Christian Communications, describes homosexuals as a “perversion” and “sin,” and up until the funding stopped, received $544,813 from the government. The organization says the funding was used to help dig wells, promote hygiene and build latrines in Uganda through 2014.
In Uganda, gays and lesbians face great discrimination from the nation’s administration.
The Canadian government has condemned the strong homophobia in Uganda, and Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird has been rallying against an anti-gay bill (Uganda Anti Homosexuality Bill) which could potentially hand many homosexuals the death penalty.
“We will speak out on the issues that matter to Canadians –whether it is the role and treatment of women around the world, or the persecution of gays,” Baird said last October at an international conference in Quebec City.
However, Minister for International Cooperation Julian Fantino believes that the funding shouldn’t stop as it will benefit Uganda –and other nations overseas- not the anti-gay organization.
“We fund results-based projects, not organizations,” Fantino told CTV News on Monday. “And religion has nothing to do with any of that.”
Carolyn Innis, spokeswoman for Crossroads, told The Canadian Press in an email that their views on sexuality are informed by the bible however they do not use their views to influence policies in the countries that they are helping out.
“Crossroads’ views on sexuality are informed by our Christian faith and values.
“It has not been a practice of Crossroads to influence matters of policy in countries in which we are completing relief or development projects.”