Parents and community members have expressed outrage over the naked swim day planned at a public facility in Canada.
A nudist group, called the Calgary Nude Recreation, has rented out the Southland Leisure Centre, a publicly funded space, for a nudist experience set for January 14.
But this isn’t your typical bunch of retired professors with ponytails and an affinity for acoustic music getting weird together at some private event. The nudist group is encouraging children to attend their Naked Water Slides and Wave Pool event. The event is even being staffed by government employees.
“This group is family oriented and kid friendly and open to people of all ages, body types, all genders, sexual orientations, and anyone else in between,” says Calgary Nude Recreation’s Meetup page.
Under the “Why” section of the page, the group writes:
Because being naked is awesome! The meetups are not a place to show off your body to others, compare or stare, but rather a place that you can enjoy being naked, in your rawest self expression in a safe and welcoming, non judgmental environment. We as a society are inundated with so much false ideals about body image that we can easily become lost in self criticism, judgement and insecurities. This group is a place to break free from our societal constraints and tap into the liberation and freedom from embarrassment and shame and allow us to fully embrace and courageously love all of ourselves in the presence of others.
The site makes note that nudity for men “is REQUIRED,” and says women should be “topless at minimum.”
So not only can children openly attend this nudist event at a public facility, but government-paid staffers are set to work the event because “the Naked Water Slides and Wave Pool event will be running after-hours,” reports CBC.
“We’ve had no issue” staffing the event, said Jarret Hoebers, recreation regional manager with the City of Calgary. “We’ve got a huge variety and diversity in our workforce and booking for any special event isn’t really an issue.”
“We get all kinds of bookings from all kinds of groups of citizens,” added Hoebers. “Whether it be special-interest [groups], sport, recreation, leisure; it doesn’t matter what it is.”
Yeah, this isn’t exactly sitting well with those in the community. (Shocking!)
A Change.org petition asking for the event to at least be modified for those 18 years of age and older has garnered over 6,500 signatures.
“There’s an upcoming event in Calgary that really concerns me, as well as other people,” says the petition. “I respect the concept and believe in an 18+ setting it could be a popular event. However, having naked children around a bunch of naked adults doesnt [sic] seem like a good idea for any reason. Realistically there is alot [sic] of mental illness out there that this event could trigger/effect.”
The petition expresses concern about sexual predators using the event; “having an event like that is just like Christmas to them,” it says.
“Please take this into heavy consideration, and if you have kids or grandkids. Take a look at them and ask yourself if it feels right for them to run around naked with naked older folks. Not all parents make great choices for their kids, so let’s not make these bad choices available to them please!” reads the petition.