Queer and Trans Poverty Study

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Update, June 9: Trish speaks in support of Vancouver School Board policy for queer and trans students. Find out more here.

A major gap in research on queer and trans poverty in BC currently exists; because of this these communities are being excluded from initiatives trying to address poverty. So the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition is working on a queer and trans poverty research study, and the results will be launched in a few months.

The goal of the research project is to bring attention to this issue through interviews with front-line service providers along with analysis of statistics and research on queer and trans poverty across North America. If you are aware of statistics, data and any information that may be relevant to this research project, please e-mail Trish or phone 604-801-5121, x241.

Jonny Sopotiuk, our research associate, has spent the last year interviewing advocates and representatives working within queer and trans communities in BC about the following poverty factors:

– Welfare, income assistance and disability benefits;
– Low-wage work, employment discrimination and inadequate or unsafe working conditions;
– Homelessness, housing affordability and housing discrimination;
– Child poverty and youth homelessness;
– Affordable early learning and childcare;
– Affordable and accessible training, apprenticeship and post-secondary education opportunities; and
– Marginalization due to rejection from traditional family support networks.

For the purpose of this study, queer and trans are being used as umbrella terms. Queer as the umbrella term for individuals identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, two-spirit, queer, questioning, intersex, undisclosed or non-labeling and asexual. Trans as the umbrella term for individuals who identify as transgender, transsexual, cross-dressing, undisclosed or non-labeling and gender-queer.

The research is designed to engage in an overview survey of queer and trans poverty in BC. The interviews were conducted with service providers and community advocates to identify possible trends and to discover whether poverty is affecting queer and trans individuals in unique ways due to their sexual orientation and/or gender identity.

Should you have any questions or require more information regarding this research project please contact Trish.