News (USA)

Yearbook staff shake-up over photo of lesbian students holding hands

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Two high school yearbook staff members said they were fired, and two others quit in protest after their faculty adviser instructed them to remove the photo of a lesbian couple from the yearbook.

File photo

Rudolpho Tribulio and Anna Carmicheal, students at William J. Palmer High School in Colorado Springs, Colo., told KRDO-TV that they were told to eliminate the photo of a lesbian couple holding hands on a page they were creating about high school relationships.

“She told me to in these exact words, you either cut the gay couple or I cut the page.” said Tribulio.

Colorado Springs School District 11 spokesperson Devra Ashby however, said that the page contained “too much PDA (public displays of affection) and that is against Palmer policy.”

“Regardless of any sort of situation inside the photograph, if there’s too much PDA, it’s against policy. It’s going to get cut,” said Ashby, in defending the decision to eliminate the photo.

Tribulio disagreed, and said, “If you look at pictures from last year’s yearbook … you can see several forms of public displays of affection.”

Ashby said the relationships page has been eliminated and replaced with a “diversity” page that will consist of a collage of photographs representing differing cultural backgrounds.

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