Message from the Board
ACCM is appalled by the hateful marches that occurred in Montreal and across Quebec and Canada on September 20th and condemn them in the strongest terms. We stand in solidarity with educators and parents who are cultivating classrooms that promote the safety and acceptance of 2SLGBTQ+ people of all ages. We applaud the many counter-protesters who stood up to hate and intolerance. We will never stop advocating for the rights of all young people to access accurate, inclusive, and affirming education and community support.
The human rights of 2SLGBTQ+ people are central to all aspects of ACCM’s mandates. HIV disproportionately impacts 2SLGBTQ+ people. For example, globally, trans women are 66 times more likely than the general population to live with HIV, and trans men 7 times more likely. ACCM has always provided support for queer and trans people, and is led by a majority 2SLGBTQ+ staff and board of directors. We strive to cultivate environments that are safe for 2SLGBTQ+ people and families. This work is never complete until our society is free from intolerance toward 2SLGBTQ+ people.
ACCM has long filled a wide gap in sexuality and gender education curricula in Quebec, we are driven by expertise in sexuality and gender education. ACCM staff and volunteers are at the very forefront of the work that last week’s marches seek to undo. Providing workshops on sexual health and gender, a toolkit to support educators to deliver this material, and a sexual health texting hotline. They are uniquely placed to see the benefits of knowledge about gender and sexuality, the importance of safe learning environments for 2SLGBTQ+ youth, and the hard work many educators do to work towards these goals.
ACCM is led by the knowledge and experience—lived, academic and professional—of queer and trans people across generations. In our work, we see the ongoing need to defend 2SLGBTQ+ safety, health and human rights. Through decades of struggle, we have seen progress in our lifetimes. We are disturbed to see intolerance, thinly veiled as “parental rights,” threaten this progress when so much more is yet to be achieved. This backsliding in Canada and across the globe is driven by the extreme right, and preys on the fear and ignorance of concerned parents to further a dangerous agenda.
Born in the radical AIDS activism of the 1980s, ACCM has always fought this dynamic where the far right exploits the outrage of the ignorant and afraid. Our movement has always fought a virus on one front and hate and ignorance on the other. We know how education is central to all these fights. Inspired by the resilience we see in our community—at our peer support groups, among beautiful queer families at community events, from our amazing staff and volunteers helping students and educators with this work–ACCM will continue fighting alongside 2SLGBTQ+ people to protect everything they have gained. And then we will fight for more.
– ACCM Board of Directors