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Sports Inclusion Program

Sports Inclusion Program

ccgsd-hands-finalThe Sports Inclusion Program at the Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity aims to challenge homophobia and transphobia in athletics – to make sports a more accepting and inclusive pastime for all athletes, regardless of sexual orientation and/or gender identity.

We will work with amateur and recreational sports leagues, gym classes, and school and community groups (etc) all around Ontario to increase awareness and understanding about LGBTQ+ issues in sports. We believe everybody is affected by hetero- and cis-sexism in athletics, not only queer and trans people – so we hope to collaborate with sportspeople and trainers throughout the province to create action plans on how to combat ignorance, reduce bigotry, and improve the atmosphere of inclusiveness and acceptance in athletics.

Towards these goals, we offer two workshops for interested and eligible groups (that is, anybody involved in some type of sport, not at the professional or collegiate level). More information on these can be found below. These trainings are completely free of charge (we are fortunately funded by a grant), and we are willing to travel to where you are to facilitate them, in either English or French.

If you have any questions about eligibility or would like to arrange your workshop – please email Jefferson at sports@ccgsd-ccdgs.org or call our Centre at 613-400-1875.

We would like to know where you are located, how many participants will attend the workshop, and which of the two trainings you prefer. We are looking forward to your emails and phone calls and are excited to work with you in the future!

Awareness Workshop: LGBTQ+ Inclusion in Sports (1-2 hours)

This workshop starts by introducing LGBTQ+ identities and covers key terms and basic terminology in order to build a foundation for further knowledge. Then we move into how experiences of queer people in sports often differ from straight/cisgender athletes, enlightening participants about these varying obstacles and issues related to LGBTQ+ inclusion in sports, that most are not aware of. We discuss how we can improve acceptance and strive to be more welcoming athletic individuals and organizations, for queer athletes but also all sportspeople. We discuss as a group how to effect these changes and increase inclusivity in sports, so we have more knowledge and strategies to boost participation and success. Naturally, we also feature a lengthy Q&A session.

Certificate Workshop: Challenging Heterosexism & Cissexism in Sports (3-4 hours)

The Certificate Workshop takes the structure of the Awareness Workshop and expands upon it. It involves deeper learning and much richer discussion about many topics relevant to LGBTQ+ athletics, such as motivation to play sports, benefits of it, systems of oppression, differentials in access, gender-verification testing in the Olympics, histories of exclusion, and famous queer athletes. We also empower and assist the participants to create strong action plans to create change in their organizations and communities, using the principles of SMART Goals. Each person earns an official Certificate from the CCGSD for their participation in this training, and we follow up in the future to check in on the action plans and find out what progress has been made.

Basketball

We Stand With Orlando

We Stand With Orlando

“Hate will never silence the LGBTQ+ community.”

In collaboration with CenterLink (the U.S. LGBTQ centers’ association),  The LGBTQ Center of Central Florida, and over 120 LGBTQ organizations in the United States and Canada, we have released our official joint statement on the Orlando shootings.

Our hearts break for the LGBTQ community in Orlando and for the families, friends, and loved ones of those who were killed. While we are still learning many facts about the shooting, one thing is clear: this attack targeted LGBTQ people, particularly the many LGBTQ Latinx people attending Latin night at the Pulse nightclub. 

13443249_10157180530255106_4595016489903168588_oWe know that many people want to help. Right now, Orlando victims & LGBTQ leaders in the region ask that you: 

  • Make a donation to the Orlando Victims’ Fund. You can do so directly by clicking here, or make a tax receiptable donation though the Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity by clicking here (make sure to select the Orlando Victims’ Fund)

  • Volunteer for outreach projects and fundraisers for Orlando by emailing Myki: orlando@ccgsd-ccdgs.org. Over the next few weeks, we will be going to bars, clubs, businesses and events to collect donations.

  • Learn more by WeStandWithOrlando campaign here.

  • Show your allyship! We will also be donating 50% of our Rainbow Pride button proceeds to the Orlando Victims’ Fund until June 30, 2016. Please buy your buttons here!

  • Put up a button box. We have created button boxes and poster that can easily be put up in your business, organization, or community centre. Please request a button box in Ottawa-Gatineau by emailing Myki: orlando@ccgsd-ccdgs.org. For persons outside of Ottawa-Gatineau, please email: info@ccgsd-ccdgs.org.
World Hepatitis Day: Canadian Youth Poster Contest!

World Hepatitis Day: Canadian Youth Poster Contest!

Are you a talented artist? Are you between the ages of 14-19? Are you passionate about using your skills to raise awareness about important issues? If you answered yes to all of the above, we have an exciting announcement for you!

The Canadian Society for International Health (CSIH), in partnership with the Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity, will be hosting a national poster contest for World Hepatitis Day 2016!

We are asking youth from all across Canada, between the ages of 14-19, to submit poster designs that will not only be awesome to look at but will also help raise awareness about hepatitis B or C. It can be anything from rates of hepatitis in Canada, to promoting the importance of getting tested, or even highlighting the importance of harm reduction strategies! We want these posters to reflect the voices of youth on this important topic! (If you do use facts, please include where you got your information from.) Submissions will be accepted in English or French.

There will be two winners, one from each age category (14-16 and 17-19)! Not only will each winner get $200, but your poster design will be shared and used as promotional material to raise awareness about hepatitis in future World Hepatitis Days all across Canada!

For more information, please download and review the info below. To enter, please mail all submissions with the Consent Form to:

WHD Poster Contest
Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity
440 Albert St, Suite C-304
Ottawa, ON
K1R 5B5

NEW Deadline is August 19th, 2016. 

****With recent events impacting postal services in Canada, please submit your posters via photocopy/photo taken by camera, and send it to forum@ccgsd-ccdgs.org****

If you have additional questions, please email Kai at forum@ccgsd-ccdgs.org.

We look forward to reviewing all of your submissions!

 

Contest details (English)                Consent Form (English)

 Contest details (French)                Consent Form (French)

I Stop HIV Stigma

I Stop HIV Stigma

Three and a half decades from the mass spread of HIV/AIDS has offered international research, resources, media coverage, and implementation of new medical strategies. Despite this, there is no cure and no better widespread public understanding of the virus and those who live with it. Today, stemming from a devastating generation of infection and loss in the 1980s, individuals living with HIV and AIDS often face stigma and discrimination in many facets of their lives. This discrimination often permeates peoples’ employment, access to healthcare, family, and relationships. Unfortunately, many people face additional discrimination from prejudices existing against high risk populations for HIV/AIDS, such as men who have sex with men, sex workers, or people who have used injection drugs.

We at the CCGSD stand against HIV Criminalization and demand immediate federal action. Moreover we ask that all Ministers of Education take steps to add important information about HIV (and STBBIs) prevention to curriculums at all grades so that young people can be fully informed and make educated decisions.

The lack of understanding of how HIV/AIDS is transmitted and affects individuals creates an environment where those living with HIV/AIDS are unjustly targeted. This has caused many people to suffer consequences after disclosing their status, or prevented many people from disclosing their status for fear of the discrimination that would follow. The choice not to disclose status for any reason, whether privacy or fear of stigma, can lead to people into a situation of inadequate medical coverage, lack of time off for health, or not seeking appropriate medical treatment. These factors perpetuate the conditions that makes HIV/AIDS a virus that often goes untested, untreated, seldom prevented, and often misunderstood. The stigma of HIV/AIDS alone is a powerful obstacle to populations being properly treated and to eradicating the virus entirely.

Canada’s Source for HIV and Hepatitis C Information

http://www.catie.ca/en/home

Public Health Agency of Canada: Population Specific HIV/AIDS Status Report

http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/aids-sida/publication/ps-pd/people-personnes/chapter-chapitre-4-eng.php

Averting HIV and AIDS: Stigma, Discrimination, and HIV

http://www.avert.org/professionals/hiv-social-issues/stigma-discrimination

Momentum Study by the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS

http://momentumstudy.ca/

 

 

How can HIV be transmitted?

HIV can be transmitted from an infected person through their blood, semen, rectal fluid, vaginal fluid, or breast milk entering the blood stream of an uninfected person. This can happen through and open cut, the vaginal lining, the rectum, the opening of the penis, or any wet lining of the body. HIV cannot pass through healthy and unbroken skin. The most common ways HIV is transmitted is through sex or sharing needles, but it cannot be passed on through hugging, shaking hands, coughs and sneezes, swimming pools, food, or toilet seats. HIV can be transmitted to anybody, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, or sexual orientation.

What is the treatment for HIV?

Currently, there is no cure for HIV. However, there are treatment options for those who are living with HIV which includes a drug regime that helps to keep the viral load low; in other words, how much HIV is in your blood.

My partner has HIV, what can I do to protect myself?

Using antiretroviral drugs before exposure can help reduce the risk of HIV-negative individuals from acquiring HIV. Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a pill used continuously before and after exposure to HIV to help prevent the virus from replicating. PrEP should be used in conjunction with condoms, consistent STI testing, and safe sexual practices. For more information on how to protect yourself, follow the link below to CATIE’s prevention strategies.

http://www.catie.ca/en/prevention/prevention-technologies#pep

How am I legally protected from discrimination?

The law prohibits discrimination against an individual because they have HIV. This includes employers, landlords, hospitals, business, banks, and the government. If you have experienced discrimination from someone or an institution, you can seek legal counsel in human rights law.

When am I legally obliged to disclose my HIV/AIDS status?

The law states that you have a duty to disclose your HIV status to a sexual partner if there is a “realistic possibility” to that person during sex. What “realistic possibility” means in various circumstances, however, is not always clearly defined by the court, and this can make it difficult to tell if you have a legal duty to disclose. These definitions change depending on what type of sexual intercourse you are having, how high or low your viral count is at testing, whether or not you are using condoms, and a variety of other factors. To protect yourself legally, it’s important to gain an understanding of how these circumstances apply to you. You can find an overview of information through CATIE’s website below, and you can always seek legal counsel from a lawyer. Exposing a person to HIV without telling that person beforehand is considered a crime and you can be charged for failing to disclose your status, even in situations where you may not have thought you had a legal duty to disclose.

http://www.catie.ca/en/practical-guides/hiv-disclosure

Addressing MSM donor eligibility policy

Addressing MSM donor eligibility policy

As of June 20, 2016, Health Canada has officially approved Canadian Blood Services’ request to reduce the five year abstinence restriction on men who have sex with men to a period of one year of abstinence before being eligible to donate blood. This change will take effect in August 2016 for both Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec. Despite the reduction in the deferral period, it is still highly restrictive to men who have sex with men (MSM) blood donors and continues to foster a culture of discrimination and stigma.

The Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity has advocated for an end to any length of ban, but also strongly advocates evidence based practice. The original implementation of a MSM ban policy in the 1980s was not research based; however, all changes are now required by Health Canada to be supported by research evidence. The reduction of the deferral period also comes with Health Canada’s commitment of $3M to fund behavioural research and pathogen-testing technology. As it stands, there is little existing research on how sexual behaviour creates risk for the blood supply, nor research demonstrating that MSM should be restricted as donors.

Since 2012, the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity has been a part of a MSM Deferral Policy Working Group, and continues to work closely with Canadian Blood Services, Héma-Québec, and our Advisory Committee to bring awareness to the discriminatory policies in place, and the research based polices we continue to strive for.

 

Statement from the Minister of Health on one year blood donor deferral period for MSM

Canadian Blood Services statement on deferral reduction

Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity official statement to deferral reduction

Canadian Blood Services donor eligibility resources for MSM

Canadian Blood Services places restrictions on transgender donors

 

Frequently asked questions

What are the donor eligibility criteria for men who have sex with men in Canada?

From August 15, 2016, men who have sex with men are required to abstain from any sexual contact with another man for a period of one year before they are considered eligible to give a blood donation with Canadian Blood Services or Héma-Québec if they meet all other donor eligibility criteria.

Can a woman donate blood if she has had a MSM partner in the past year?

No, if a woman has had sexual contact in the past year with a man who has had sex with another man she is not eligible to donate blood.

What are the donor eligibility criteria for trans and gender non-conforming individuals?

From August 15, 2016, Canadian Blood Services will screen trans and gender non-conforming individuals based on their assigned sex at birth and whether or not they have had genital surgery. Those who have not had gender-affirming genital surgery will be screened by their assigned sex at birth. Those who have had gender-affirming genital surgery will be required to wait one year post surgery before being eligible for donation; after one year they will be screened by their affirmed gender.

How will behaviour based research help to remove the MSM deferral period?

The deferral period, which is not evidence based practice, operates by assuming one group (MSM) is more likely to taint the blood supply, notably with HIV. All blood donated to Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec are tested for pathogens which can be detected after 9 to 11 days after an individual is infected. Men are required to abstain from sexual contact with another man for an arbitrary one year, a deferral that not all donors are required to wait.

With behavioural research, it will be possible to gather data on low versus high risk donors based on their sexual behaviour, irrespective of their sexual orientation or gender identity. With this data, Health Canada can make evidence based policy decisions that accurately assess risk through behaviour and end the discrimination and restriction of certain groups.

Where can I learn more about the deferral period and eligibility criteria?

You can learn more about the MSM blood ban, the advent of the deferral period, and current donor eligibility criteria on the Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec website.

How can I help end the MSM blood ban?

There are so many ways you can get involved:

  • Call your Member of Parliament and let them know how important evidence based decision making is for policy, and that they should support the House of Commons Standing Health Committee in this work
  • Encourage those who are eligible to donate to fill out the survey after their donation to express how important this issues is to Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec
  • Donate to the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity so we can continue our work to end the ban entirely
#SupportSexEd

#SupportSexEd

The Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity is proud to stand with over 140 agencies in supporting the Ontario revisions to the curriculum.12032684_10153078913538021_3147863464239307889_o

“This is about the health and safety of Ontario youth,” says director Jeremy Dias. “It takes a village to raise our children, and for a long time we have failed. We allowed the internet to mis-inform a generation of youth who are struggling.  It is time that we empower teachers, parents, guardians and youth to take charge of their health. Frankly this curriculum will save lives and make our community safer.”

The Centre would like to thank the grass roots organizers who formed this initiative (#SupportSexEd), the agencies who stand together, and the countless Facebook & petition supporters.

Continue to support this initiative by signing the petition and making 3 calls to you MPP, School Board Trustee & local Principals to show your support for this campaign.

Please also share the reasons why your voice is required in the youth lead campaign below:

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