Calgary City Council updated its controversial harassment bylaw Tuesday evening and approved another to prevent opponents of drag shows — particularly those involving children — from peacefully voicing their displeasure.
During a regularly scheduled council meeting, city council added "intimidation" to the existing bylaw.
Councillors also passed a second yet similar bylaw on Tuesday, called the safe and inclusive access bylaw. It prohibits protests within 100 metres of a recreation facility or library, effective immediately.
Charges under each bylaw carry a maximum penalty of up to $10,000 or six months in prison.
Council will review both in about a month to assess their utility.
The move comes as Christian pastor Derek Reimer, 36, protested a drag queen story hour, Reading with Royalty, at Seton Public Library in February.
During drag queen story hours, adults dressed in drag read to children in recreational facilities, typically libraries, earning tense pushback from concerned parents.
Libraries across Canada — including Halifax, Moncton, and Coquitlam — have faced similar protests in recent months.
In particular, Reimer faces criminal charges and additional charges concerning the first bylaw.
"Recent protests have targeted members of the [LGBTQ] community and impeding the city of Calgary's ability to provide safe and inclusive access to city services," reads the second bylaw.
"The public is entitled to access these services without being exposed to messaging, or behaviour that is hateful, intimidates, harasses or discriminates."
In addition to reading programs at public libraries, the new bylaw lists multiple events to justify the added protections amid “security concerns.”
Other events include the postponed Drag on Ice event at the Chinook Blast festival on February 10 and the ongoing protests at Canyon Meadows aquatic and fitness centre, where a biological male allegedly changed in its women’s locker room in the presence of underage girls.