Canada 2017 Rainbow Grants

Canada 2017 Rainbow Grants

The Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity is proud to partner with HSBC to present the: Canada 2017 Rainbow Grants. Through 2017 we will be giving away 150 micro-grants of $150 to make Canada a Prouder place!

Any educational institution, community organization or grassroots initiative can apply for these micro-grants using the form here: Click for the Applicaiton Form Here.

The grants are designed to support initiatives and projects that promote diversity, and challenge discrimination in your community or school. This can include workshops, arts projects, campaigns, conferences, or something else. Be creative!

We look forward to reading your applicaiton and support your projects!

Some guidelines:

  • Grants will be distributed on a monthly basis for projects taking place in 2017.
  • Grants will be distributed on a rolling basis. This means that if you meet the criteria you will be approved. This process will continue till all 150 grants are distributed.
  • We are looking to support your initiatives (new or existing) to make Canada a proud(er) place.
  • Some examples of projects include: bringing in a speaker to talk about inclusion, new resources for a classroom, or supplies to organization a celebration (dance, poetry event, awards ceremony…). Please don’t be limited by theses examples, we hope to support innovative and creative projects.
  • Successful applicants will be required to submit a brief evaluation with pictures of their project.
  • If a acknowledgement is available, we will request you include the HSBC & CCGSD logos, and/or acknowledge the support of the Canada 2017 Rainbow Grants, presented by the Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diveristy.
  • Priority will be given to projects that recognize issue of LGBTQ+ topics, intersectionality, colonization, and human rights. Priory will also be given to projects that mark import pieces of LGBTQ+ history; some key dates are below.
  • We are only able to support projects that celebrate diversity. Any projects that promote discrimination will not be selected.


A note about 2017:

We at the CCGSD are celebrating Canada 2017. We recognize that Canada’s history dates back before confederation (1867). Moreover, we recognize the impacts of colonization, genocide of Indigenous peoples, and the impacts of residential schools. We recognize our communities shared responsibility to take action to promote reconciliation ( As you apply for your grant, please keep these ideas in mind.


A timeline of LGBTQ+ History in Canada (1950’s till 1980’s):

by Prof Gary Kinsman
Please note: Language used in this document speaks to the real history and language used at time. The absence of the experiences of trans persons, QTIPOC persons and others, refers directly to the erasure of theses communities by the mainstream at the time. We hope your projects will acknowledge this and challenge our communities’ history of oppression towards one another in your projects.

Early 1960s:  Early Resistance and Organizing

  • The anti-homosexual national security campaign began officially in Canada in the late 1950s and lasted
    officially until the later 1980s and into the early 1990s in the military. These campaigns included the creation of a detection technology devised by Dr. F.R. Wake infamously known as the “Fruit Machine.” Many gay men and lesbians refused to co-operate with these purge campaigns which led to thousands of people losing their jobs. In spite of this state surveillance and policing, gay men and lesbians organized homophile groups such as the Vancouver-based Association for Social Knowledge (ASK), formed in 1964 that undertook early popular
    educational and law reform efforts.  The ASK Newsletter and magazines such as Two and Gay also played a critical role in keeping the emerging homosexual communities informed about social and political issues such as anti-queer policies and sexual policing.

Late 1960s:  Law Reform and its Limitations

  • In 1965, Everett George Klippert was charged with gross indecency for having consensual homosexual sex. At sentencing Crown appointed psychiatrists declared him to be a “dangerous sexual offender” (DSO) since he was likely to continue to engage in gay sex.  A 1967 Supreme Court appeal unholding his indefinite detention as a DSO sparked a debate leading up to the passage of the 1969 Criminal Code Reform. Partly based on the spaces opened up by early homophile organizing Pierre Elliot Trudeau (as Justice Minister and then as Prime Minister) and others argued that while homosexual acts between two consenting adults (21 and over) in “private” may be a form of mental illness it did not constitute a criminal act.  This was based on the form of public/private, adult/youth sexual regulation developed in the 1957 English Wolfenden Report. Despite this apparently “liberal” reform the sexual policing of gay men escalated after the 1969 reform.

1970s: Liberation Movements and Human Rights

  • The 1969 New York City Stonewall Riots against police repression provided the spark for liberationist organizing that moved beyond the more moderate approaches of homophile organizing. In this context on
    August 28, 1971, approximately 200 people marched on Parliament Hill and delivered a brief prepared by Toronto Gay Action known as “We Demand.” This protest led to the formation of The Body Politic, a prominent gay magazine and facilitated the emergence of gay liberation, lesbian feminist and gay rights movements.  Early alliances between gay liberation, feminist, and anti-racist activists were built signaling the connections between historically oppressed people. Movement organizing shifted from a liberationist approach to a human rights based approach focusing on sexual orientation protection in human rights legislation. As sexual policing in the later 1970s intensified the raid on Montreal’s Truxx Bar in October 1977 and the massive protests that followed led to the inclusion of sexual orientation in the Quebec Charter of Rights.

1970s: Lesbian Feminism

  • Lesbians experience oppression both as women and as lesbians and have been quite involved in both gay and feminist organizing. In the gay movement lesbians experienced sexism from gay men and in the feminist movement often heterosexism from heterosexual women. They therefore formed their own autonomous lesbian feminist movement to fight against sexism and heterosexism. Groups such as the Lesbian Organization of Ottawa Now (LOON), the Atlantic Provinces Political Lesbians for Equality (APPLE), the Lesbian Organization of Toronto (LOOT), and the Lesbian Caucus of the British Columbia Federation of Women created lesbian feminism as a political force. ThePedestal, Broadside, and Long Time Coming. Groups such as Wages Due Lesbians, the Lesbian Mothers Defense Fund, and the defence effort for The Brunswick Four, four lesbians who were evicted from a heterosexual tavern, were some of the organizing efforts that characterized the radical politics of lesbian feminism in Canada.

1970s: Queering Whiteness and Gender

  • Queers of colours, bisexuals, transgendered people  and transsexuals began to organize themselves within gay and lesbian communities since their specific needs were not being addressed. Many queers of colour continued to face racism within queer communities and the assumption that that “normal” gay person was white.  Caribbean-Canadian author, Makeda Silvera was central in establishing a foothold in queer communities as an out black lesbian feminist. A co-funder of Sister Vision: Black Women and Women of Colour Press in 1985, Silvera played a key role in making visible and radicalizing lesbians of colour.
  • Transsexual and transgendered people often found their needs not being addressed within queer movements and communities as they also had to resist the gender regulations coming from the medical management of transsexual experience and institutions like the Clarke Institute in Toronto. Trans organizing put in question the two-gender binary (man/woman) system.

1970s: Resisting Moral Conservatives

  • By the later 1970s a wave of moral conservatism (often referring to itself as the “Moral Majority”) swept
    across the USA and into Canada targeting queers, feminists, leftists, and anti-racist activists. In particular they focused on defending the heterosexual family. In 1977 and 1978, a rash of protests against Anita Bryant, the spokesperson of the “Save Our Children” campaign in the USA erupted in Canada galvanizing queer activists. Invited and funded by Renaissance International and other moral conservative groups Bryant’s visits to Canadian cities galvanized gay and lesbian organizing.  Groups formed included the Coalition to Stop Anita Bryant, Gay Liberation Against the Right Everywhere (GLARE) and Lesbians Against the Right (LAR). Moral
    conservative organizing against queers has continued but it was pushed back by mass mobilizations and alliance building in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Late 1970s to Early 1980s- Fighting Back

  • The “clean up” campaign prior to the 1976 Montreal Olympic summer games led initially to the closing down of lesbian and gay establishments in Montreal and Ottawa including Sauna Aquarius, Baby Face, Limelight Bar, Neptune Sauna, Club Baths, Jilly’s and the Club Baths. Demonstrations, however, turned this situation around. The Olympic “clean-up” campaign was part of a broader escalation of sexual policing that included the use of bawdy-house legislation against gay establishments as they became more publicly visible. In 1981 with the police code name of Operation Soap the Toronto bath raids took place when the police arrested close to 300 men and there was a mass response to this in the city streets. These mobilizations and defence efforts led to the acquittal of the vast majority of the men who had been charged forcing the police to back off other such large-scale raids as well as to the major expansion of gay community formation in Toronto. These mass mobilizations, the expansion of communities, and the progress of human rights struggles helped to lay the basis for the later use of the equality rights section of the Charter to advance gay and lesbian legal rights struggles.


As this is the first time we are running a project like this we invite your feedback! Should you have any questions, suggestion or ideas, please email:


Gilbert Baker Memorial Fund
Take action on Bill C-39

Take action on Bill C-39

BirthdayWhat is Bill C-39?

The Federal Government has taken action to reform Canada’s Criminal Code by removing ‘zombie laws’ – laws that have been struck down in court and cannot be enforced. These laws are no longer reflective of Canadian societal attitudes, but remain in the Code because Parliament must observe formal process to strike them from the books.


Bill C-39 is an Act to amend the Criminal Code (unconstitutional provisions) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts. The Act includes the repeal of section 159 of the Criminal Code, the prohibition of anal intercourse. This legislation was initially introduced as Bill C-32, but has since been absorbed into C-39.


The repeal of section 159 of the Criminal Code would promote the equality rights protected by subsection 15(1) of the Charter, which provides that everyone is equal before and under the law. Section 159 prohibits anal intercourse, except by a husband and wife or two persons who are both 18 years or older, and where the act is consensual and takes place in private. The offence has had a disparate impact on gay and bisexual men, whose consensual sexual activities have been uniquely targeted for prohibition under the Criminal Code.


In addition, courts in five provinces as well as the Federal Court of Canada (Trial Division) have found section 159 to unjustifiably discriminate on the prohibited grounds of sexual orientation, age and marital status.


The repeal will equalize the range of sexual conduct before the law, and lower the applicable age of consent from 18 to 16, making it equal to the required age of consent for all other consensual sexual activity.


History of Act

In November 2016, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould proposed Bill C-32 to repeal Section 159, which was then incorporated into Bill C-39. C-39 was introduced and read in the House of Commons on March 8, 2017.


Minister Wilson-Raybould rightly called Section 159 ‘discriminatory’, and cited statistics of 69 Canadians charged under this section between 2014 and 2015.  Many Canadians may have thought that this outdated law was abolished in the 60’s during Pierre Trudeau’s progressive administration. In fact, the law was not repealed, only amended to create exemptions for legal adults in heterosexual unions. This meant that the law still discriminated against gay and bisexual men, and that the age of consent remained unequal.


Bill C-39 is part of the Liberal government’s commitment to ensure that all Canadians are treated equally and respectfully, and that the challenges faced by LGBTQ+ individuals are brought to light. The passage of this Bill will be a triumph for our community, and hopefully indicates the enactment of further measures, protections, and resources that support true equality.


Why Is This Legislation Significant to the LGBTQ+ Community?

This Bill represents a significant stride in equality towards same sex relationships, and the way they are perceived not only by society as a whole, but by members of law enforcement.

The Bill also gives individuals the information, power, and autonomy to decide what they want to do with their own bodies once they reach the age of consent.


Most importantly, the legislation may also make sex education more available, particularly to youth, giving them a chance to make informed decisions about their sexual activity and health. While the age of consent for anal intercourse was 18 years of age, many authorities felt it was unnecessary or inappropriate that sex education be open and accessible about risk factors and safe practices. This resulted in increased health risks, and a continuation of the stigma around LGBTQ+ relationships.


What Else Is Included In This Act?

Bill C-39 proposes to either repeal or amend various provisions under the Criminal Code that have been found to have been unenforceable because they are inconsistent with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. For more information on the full scope of the Act, please visit:


What is the CCGSD Doing?

The CCGSD is currently working to publicize this legislation and create awareness both within, and outside of the LGBTQ+ community. We are also meeting with parliamentarians on an ongoing basis in an effort to educate them about the issues faced by LGBTQ+ Canadians. Our focus now is on Members of Parliament, and how they will vote on this Bill.


If you have any suggestions for us on our efforts towards C-39, or if you would like to collaborate on projects to advance this Bill, please contact


Next Steps – Get Involved!

We need all Canadians to contact their Member of Parliament and urge them to pass Bill C-39 unchanged.


Taking action is easy. Simply:


Click this link to open a list of Members of Parliament

Find your MP.

Email (see draft email below) or call them, and tell them to pass Bill C-39 immediately.

Share this page on social media, at the office, in school and at your community organizations–and get your friends and family to take action too!


Sample Email:

Dear Member of Parliament,


I’m writing to you in support of Bill C-39, an Act to amend the Criminal Code (unconstitutional provisions) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts. Within this legislation is the repeal of Section 159, the prohibition of anal intercourse. This provision is discriminatory towards members of the LGBTQ+ community, and its repeal is a step towards equality.


LGBTQ+ Canadians struggle daily with inequity. Allowing this outdated law to remain on the books not only leaves the required age of consent unequal for different consensual sex acts, but also perpetuates the stigma around LGBTQ+ relationships. As Canadian society makes strides forward towards understanding and equality, the Criminal Code must change to reflect new attitudes.


This Bill must pass through the House of Commons with support from all parties. Please take action to understand and support Bill C-39.



(Your name, and city, province or territory)




National Forums
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 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)Basketball

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.


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: 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: For persons outside of Ottawa-Gatineau, please email: