Pride has become the yearly marker that helps remember and celebrate the decades of work, activism, and activists who have taken a stand against homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia.
And we recognize there continues to be a lot more work to be done.
The statistics are troubling: LGBTQ2S+ youth are almost five times more likely to attempt suicide than the general population of Canadian youth (Community-Based Research Centre for Gay Men’s Health, 2018).
A news article from CTV recently reported that deaths by suicide have gone up among gay and bisexual men. The National Observer reported that 21 per cent of trans people in Ontario avoided accessing emergency medical services because of fears of transphobia.
The Trevor Project, a US-based suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people, recently released the results of its first National Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health.
- Two-thirds of LGBTQ youth reported that someone attempted to convince them to change their sexual orientation or gender identity.
- 42 per cent of LGBTQ youth who underwent conversion therapy reported a suicide attempt in the last year.
- LGBTQ youth who experienced discrimination related to their sexual orientation or gender identity were twice as likely to attempt suicide.
BC’s largest, annual Pride Parade takes place on Sunday, August 2 in Vancouver, and we recognize that this might be a difficult time for LGBTQ2S+ folks. We are here to listen, here to help 365 days a year, 24.7.
If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide or is in some form of distress, call 1-800-784-2433 (1-800-SUICIDE). Other ways to reach out:
- Mental Health Support Line: 310-6789
- Vancouver Coastal Regional Distress Line: 604-872-3311
- Sunshine Coast/Sea to Sky: 1-866-661-3311
- Seniors Distress Line: 604-872-1234
- Online Chat Service for Youth: www.YouthInBC.com (Noon to 1am)
- Online Chat Service for Adults: www.CrisisCentreChat.ca (Noon to 1am)