Guest Blog: Pride Month & HomeFront
Our guest blog was written by our friends at HomeFront who work tirelessly to protect victims of domestic violence and who are committed to ensuring their organization is inclusive and equitable. Keep reading to learn more about the barriers to protection that members of the LGBTQ2S+ community endure and how organizations like HomeFront hope to help.
by Laurel McLean, Communications & Events Coordinator
Recognized annually during the month of June, Pride Month is a time to celebrate diversity and the history of LGBTQ2S+ communities, acknowledge the hardships and discrimination the community has endured, and continue to advocate for equality and inclusion for all.
Celebrating Pride and supporting the LGBTQ2S+ community is extremely important to HomeFront. For the past six years, HomeFront staff have been proud to march in the annual Calgary Pride Parade in support of healthy and safe relationships for everyone.
We recognize that the LGBTQ2S+ community experiences unique forms of coercive control and domestic violence. Within the LGBTQ2S+ community, domestic violence occurs at a higher rate than that of the heterosexual community. According to the General Social Survey completed in 2014 through Statistics Canada, individuals participating in the survey who identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual are twice as likely as heterosexual individuals to indicate experiencing spousal violence in the previous five years (8% versus 4%, respectively).
Additionally, LGBTQ2S+ individuals face distinctive barriers that can prevent them from disclosing abuse and seeking help. These can include homophobia and transphobia, heterosexism, fear of being outed, and lack of appropriate training for service providers, among many other barriers.
HomeFront is committed to ensuring we are a safe, inclusive organization for LGBTQ2S+ individuals. Our staff have received training on domestic violence within the LGBTQ2S+ community and how to best support LGBTQ2S+ clients. We work to leverage partnerships with community agencies to help reduce barriers and create equitable service delivery for all.
It is of utmost importance to our organization to ensure everyone knows they are supported by a community of love, and deserving of safe homes, respectful relationships, and healthy families. By raising awareness, we hope to empower people to know that they are not alone; they are surrounded by a community that cares.
There are a number of safe and inclusive agencies that can help if you or someone you know in the LGBTQ2S+ community is experiencing domestic violence. These include: Sagesse, Carya, and the Strathmore Shelter by the Wheatland Crisis Society. If there is immediate danger, call the police.
Want to learn more about HomeFront and how we help? Please visit: https://homefrontcalgary.com/
Calgary Corporate Challenge is proud to support HomeFront, one of 10 local charity partners in the 2021 September Games. If your company is participating in the Charity Challenge, be sure to check out the Charity Challenge Guide for more information on how to support them.