TRANSforming JUSTICE – Understanding Legal Issues Faced by Trans Individuals Living in Niagara and Across Ontario

Trans is an umbrella term referring to people whose gender identity and/or gender expression is not reflected by the gender assigned to them at birth, including people with non-binary identities. Based on recent estimates, up to 1 in 200 adults may identify as trans, broadly defined. With trans people being one of the most disadvantaged groups in society, their lives and realities are largely undocumented; little information is available about their needs or how providers can improve their services for trans clients. To better understand these needs and how to address them, the TRANSforming JUSTICE study was initiated.

TRANSforming Justice is an Ontario-wide study being undertaken by HIV & AIDS Legal Clinic Ontario (HALCO) to identify legal needs, barriers/facilitators to service, and recommendations for change. Between 2016-2017, information was gathered from trans people about their lives, legal problems, experiences with the legal system and their health and social service needs. Attention was paid to the specific experiences of trans people impacted by HIV/AIDS, racialized trans populations, and Indigenous trans communities. TRANSforming Justice is the only large-scale assessment that focuses on the legal needs of trans people in Canada.

Quest Community Health Centre, a primary health care centre located in St. Catharines with a range of services including services for sexually and gender diverse populations, aims to create more inclusive communities that better supports the needs of the LGBTQ+ community. Quest helped facilitate Niagara’s participation in the TRANSforming Justice study.  In addition to holding local focus groups at the Centre, Quest promoted participation in the study among individuals and community agencies.

The TRANSforming Justice research team will be sharing its findings with the community. A webinar will be hosted by Niagara Connects on Wednesday, November 29th from 1-2pm. Quest invites you to participate in the webinar to gain a better understanding of the needs of trans individuals in our community. Click here to register.

Despina Tzemis
Programs Manager
Quest Community Health Centre
dtzemis@questchc.ca

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