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Posts from the ‘Social Change’ Category

Gender Identity and Indigenous People

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Image courtesy of Re:Searching for LGBTQ Health

By Margaret Robinson, PhD. Affiliate Scientist in the Social and Epidemiological research department of the Centre for Addiction & Mental Health.

In literature about gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, and queer (LGBTQ) health it’s increasingly common to see ‘2’ or a ‘2S’, which stands for ‘two spirit.’ The term recognizes those of us who are LGBTQ and who are also strongly connected to our Indigenous identities. Many of our Indigenous cultures recognized people who expressed gender or sexuality differently, and such people often had special cultural responsibilities.

While mental health practitioners and community workers are increasingly encouraged to adopt culturally-based treatment approaches with Indigenous clients, little is known about two-spirit people or our perspectives on mental health. Read more

This is Our Community

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By Jenna MacKay, MA, Qualitative Researcher, team member of Re:searching for LGBTQ Health and a Master of Social Work candidate at University of Toronto.     

Research in both Canada and the US has shown that bisexuals have poorer mental health than heterosexuals, gays and lesbians. Experiences of discrimination towards bisexual people in heterosexual and gay and lesbian communities is stressful. Indeed, bisexual stereotypes and prejudice are all too common.

I am part of a dedicated team of researchers and bisexual community members looking to make a difference. Over the last seven years, our team at CAMH has collaborated with Rainbow Health Ontario and other community partners on projects related to bisexual mental health. Read more

We Must Remember Homeless LGBTQ2S Youth During Pride

safe-bed_A&JBlogBy Dr. Alex Abramovich, Postdoctoral Fellow, Social & Epidemiological Research Department

“I can’t say who I am unless you agree I’m real.” – Amiri Baraka

Is there some part of you that has been denied or ignored? A fundamental part of you that you’ve been asked or forced to hide, or that someone has refused to see? Have you ever tried to access health care or housing services only to be told that your needs cannot be accommodated and that you in fact do not exist? If you are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or two-spirit (LGBTQ2S), the answer to at least one of these questions is likely YES. Read more

LGBTIQ Pride: The Importance of Celebrating Diversity

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By Dion Carter, Manager of Diversity and Equity at CAMH

The ability to celebrate Pride in a public forum, to me, reflects an acceptance of who I am by members of the broader community. I remember my very first Pride event in Chicago many years ago. I was in awe and felt empowered to be in the presence of so many other LGBT+ people and allies. There was a great sense of liberation and safety that I had never felt before. It was an excellent display of courage and there was a presence that said: “we’re here and we’re not going to hide anymore.” Read more

Celebrating Darkness to Light the Healthy Way

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With thanks to Christina Zavaglia, Registered Dietitian & Certified Diabetes Educator, Complex Mental Illness Program

CAMH’s first ever Darkness to Light event is right around the corner, and people across the country are preparing to stay up all night in support of mental health. As you plan your event, there are a couple of  things to keep in mind, so that you’re celebrating in a safe and healthy manner. Read more

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