Monday December 03, 2018
To all our trans and gender-diverse children, youth, adults and their families: The Positive Space Network wants you to know that we are here for you, we see you, and we love you. We want you to know that you are an important part of our community, we know your identities are real and we are always standing with you as allies.
Through education, visibility, awareness, and supportive programming, the Positive Space Network envisions a future in which diverse 2SLGBTQ+ children, youth, individuals, and families live in a welcoming and supportive community. We work in the Halton Region, (Burlington, Oakville, Milton, Acton, and Georgetown), and provide 2SLGBTQ+ youth and trans specific programming. We work toward the inclusion and celebration of all 2SLGBTQ+ residents of Halton.
Positive Space Network provides transition gear to trans and gender-diverse youth and runs a trans and gender-diverse specific drop-in program for ages 6-25 called ConnecTions, as well as a parent/caregiver support and social group. We provide education to the community about the support and care that 2SLGBTQ+ children, youth, individuals, and families need. PSN has always and will always prioritize the needs of our many trans and gender-diverse youth, who are often forgotten about in the bigger conversations or in LGBTQ+ discussions.
The recent discussions around trans and gender-diverse identities, and making changes to the modernized provincial Health and Physical Education curriculum, are reminders to us all that we need to be vigilant and visible in our protection of our 2SLGBTQ+ rights and show our allyship to the trans community here in Halton. In our support and celebration of our local trans communities we should all be reflective of the injustices trans and gender-diverse people face every day.
“Being trans can feel like a constant fight, and fearing that the battles we’ve already won could be revoked is a heavy weight. The more people we know fight with us, the lighter the weight can become.” – Cory, a trans non-binary Halton resident and LGBTQ+ advocate
Gender diversity and discussing gender identity only furthers our understanding of the vastly diverse community, province, country and world we live in. Denying this only increases the barriers faced by transgender and gender-diverse individuals, creating a dangerous environment for an entire community in Ontario. We urge cisgender people to support and protect trans and gender-diverse people, and centre their voices in these discussions.
We stand in solidarity with the trans and gender-diverse community in the face of hate and ignorance. We are here for you, we see you, we love you and you are important to us. If you or someone you know has questions around sexuality and/or gender identity, please reach out and connect with the Positive Space Network staff.
Mandy Kiley – PSN Youth Collective Impact Project Coordinator