Fresno City Councilman Garry Bredefeld got into it with advocates from the LGBTQ+ Resource Center during Thursday’s council meeting.
Bredefeld spoke out against “gender affirming guidance” and any agendas to sexualize children.
The big picture: The Council approved a grant agreement totalling $100,000 with the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission to support services provided by the LGBTQ+ Resource Center.
- The council approved the grant on a 6-1 vote with Bredefeld serving as the lone voice in opposition.
- During last year’s budget process the council unanimously approved a $100,000 allocation of general fund money to support the services provided by the LGBTQ+ Resource Center.
- The approved grant was negotiated with the city’s Economic Development Department and the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission to allow the LGBTQ+ Resource Center access to the funding.
What they’re saying: Bredefeld took issue with the city supporting the resource center, with specific umbrage aimed at gender guidance programming offered by the resource center.
- “I know it’s in vogue to push this gender affirming care for young people who struggle with identity issues all the time as they grow up. Everyone on this dais has gone through adolescence and knows those difficulties as I’m sure you do,” Bredefeld told representatives from the resource center.
- Resource center manager Jennifer Cruz responded that no one is pushing gender affirming care in the community, instead providing such services to people who have made appointments.
- Bredefeld said there is an agenda to promote the sexualization of children, calling back to the drag shows at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo and Our Savior’s Lutheran Church that were marketed as family friendly.
- “It’s everywhere, and to suggest that it’s not being promoted is to put blinders on, and I think most people have the blinders off,” Bredefeld said.
- Cruz noted that the rest of the council joined with the resource center to raise the Pride flag at City Hall last year to support “all Fresno,” leading Bredefeld to fire back: “I support all Fresno too, but I don’t support this agenda of gender affirming care.”