World Congress of Families selects SLC to host 2015 conference

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – Thousands of ‘traditional family’ advocates from all around the world are planning a big conference in Salt Lake City.    

Same-sex marriage, polygamy, endogamy, mixed-, open-, and group marriages—the list goes on.  Countless types of unions exist throughout the world, but some say the importance of 'natural families' is disappearing.   

"When a man and a woman join together in marriage to form a family and have children, we believe that's the best way to raise healthy children," said David Buer, spokesman for Sutherland Institute.

That is why thousands of natural marriage advocates plan to meet for the World Congress of Families next year.

"Scholars will come in and talk about research that they've done, entertainment that will just be uplifting and fun.  There will be different educational opportunities,” said Buer.  

This will be the first time the world-renowned event has come to North America

"In some ways, America is forgetting the importance of the family, when we deal with healthcare or poverty, or all the other crises in America…” said Larry Jacobs with the World Congress of Families.  “We felt like Salt Lake was an international city.  You've hosted the Olympics; you've provided great transportation,” he said.

Brandie Balken with Equality Utah says that does not necessarily mean the organization should meet here.

"We do meet this news with some concern, knowing that they've somehow twisted the idea of traditional values—this idea of love and family, opportunity, freedom, fairness, freedom—to exclude certain people and certainly certain families," Balken said.  

Regardless of outside concern, the conference is in the works.  Sutherland Institute is already stacking the agenda.

"It's a very large undertaking so we are reaching out to the broader Salt Lake and Utah community to support us in this endeavor, and we're really pleased with the support that's come our way so far," said Buer.

For more information on what the World Congress of Families stands for, click on the following link:

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