July 1, 2020
Happy Pride! Reflecting on Pride Month
Happy Pride Month! We hope everyone was able to celebrate Pride this month—whether you tuned into the virtual events or had your own fun, physically distant celebration.
This year, because of restrictions due to COVID-19, Pride went virtual! Over 1,000 people tuned into the virtual celebration on 28 June 2020, during which various celebrities performed.
It's important to use the high energy and attention generated by Pride and its festivities to ensure that people are learning more about people in the 2SLGBTQ+ community and the struggles they have--and continue to--encounter. With that in mind, we’ve compiled some fantastic resources to learn more about the history of Pride as well as resources to ensure you’re interacting respectfully with members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community:
- Culture Trip has an article outlining the big events in Toronto Pride’s history here.
- And Queer Events Toronto has a great visual timeline version outlining Pride events in Canada.
- If you prefer videos, check out this video that Global News Toronto put together titled “The Stonewall Riots: How the gay rights movement began”.
- Rainbow Health Ontario has put together a helpful reference guide for the appropriate vocabulary to use when discussing trans and gender-diverse people.
- If you come across any terms you’re unfamiliar with while reading or watching the above resources—or even in your daily life—Queer Events Toronto has also put together a user-friendly Queer Dictionary!
- We also recommend checking out Re:Searching for LGBTQ2S+ Health, a group of researchers from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. Their website and their Twitter both have tons of good information!
- PHESC's partner Alliance for Healthier Communities has a great list of resources for 2SLGBTQ+ people.
- And the National Collaborating Centre for Determinants of Health has an interactive online module to learn more about how to achieve health equity for 2SLGBTQ+ people.
U of T researcher co-creates online health resource for 2SLGBTQ+ men
Mark Gaspar (U of T), Jahn Tamaro (McGill University), and Julie Prud’homme (University of Victoria) co-founded the website Goodhead, a site directed towards “guys into guys (G2G)”. The site provides information about how and where to access mental health services, mental health research within the G2G community, and quotes of participants’ own experiences. If you’d like to learn more about the G2G community’s unique mental health needs, we encourage you to check out their site!
Health challenges for people in the 2SLGBTQ+ community
People in the 2SLGBTQ+ community self-report lower health than members of the general population. This could be partly due to the fact that members of the community oftentimes do not seek healthcare services for fear of discrimination. In general, 2SLGBTQ+ folks tend to be at a higher risk for cardiovascular disease, some cancers, mental illness, and suicide and self-harm. There are also notable disparities between members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community and the general population with regard to chronic illness, HIV, and substance abuse, with 2SLGBTQ+ people being disproportionately affected by all three.
These risk factors, coupled with the 2SLGBTQ+ community’s negative feelings towards healthcare services, pose a significant public health problem for the 2SLGBTQ+ community. To remedy this problem, the healthcare system must become more inclusive by addressing the social determinants that are contributing to these disparities (e.g., homelessness, discrimination, education, etc.). Healthcare professionals should be trained about how to interact with 2SLGBTQ+ people in culturally safe ways.
June shouldn’t be the only time you’re consuming media and art made by 2SLGBTQ+ creators. Check out these recommendations lists for 2SLGBTQ+ content so that you can continue to support creators within the community.
Dr. Carmen Logie, an Associate Professor at the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, hosts a podcast about stigma. Each episode features a different guest who brings a unique perspective to the discussion. The most recent series of episodes have been Pride themed. Here is a link to an episode that explores LGBT mental health, the harmful consequences of conversion therapy, and more! If you enjoy it, we encourage you to check out other episodes in this series.
Here are three great reading lists to start your 2SLGBTQ+-inclusive reading journey!
If you prefer movies, here's a list of 2SLGBTQ+ movie recommendations!
Community Engagement in a time of COVID-19