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Hmns10085 mod5 Hmns10085 mod5 Presentation Transcript

  • Module 5: Issues Affecting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People Issues in Human Services HMNS 10085 Mohawk College 2012
  • QUICK DEFINITIONS • LGBTTTIQQ • the list is contested, dynamic, and constantly changing depending on who’s using it • open your mind to the multitude of identities • other factors impact the way one is in the world, e.g. intersections with race, class, gender, age, ability, etc. and standpoint
  • LGBTTTIQQ?? • What does it all mean? • Why does it matter? • Why are transgender people in the same category as gay people? – What is the difference between sex and gender?
  • SEX and GENDER • SEX – biology • genitalia/chromosomes/reproductive system – female/male • GENDER – psychological sense of self • who does one feel like? – feminine/masculine • in-between (genderqueer, liminal) • sex is what’s between the legs; gender is between the ears
  • SEX and GENDER • Cisgender – (def.) a person whose sex and gender align • so, a boy born with male biology who is masculine • or, a girl born with female biology who is feminine • cisgender people can be heterosexual, gay, bi, asexual, etc – i.e. sexuality is not mediated by gender • therefore, a trans individual’s sexual orientation is not affected by transitioning, but the label might be
  • QUEER IDENTITY IS NOT STATIC • LGBT people are not only lesbian, gay, bi or trans • they come from multiple standpoints • some are women, some are men, some are trans, some of us change our affiliation according to the situation or mood • some LGBT people are deeply closeted, while others are queer activists
  • QUEER IDENTITY IS NOT STATIC • some LGBT people are racialized • many queer people live in poverty • some live in communities where they have to navigate homophobia, transphobia, and heterosexist assumptions
  • HOMOPHOBIA, TRANSPHOBIA, HETEROSEXISM • homophobia and transphobia – defined as the hatred of gay and trans people – used to justify violence • heterosexism – the assumption that the only normal sexuality is heterosexuality, and therefore anything other than heterosexuality is abnormal and deviant – the structures of our society are built on heterosexist foundations; therefore they function to exclude, pathologize and marginalize those who do not fit
  • EFFECTS of HOMOPHOBIA and TRANSPHOBIA • Experiences of homophobia and transphobia can lead to mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, self harm, suicide, addiction • Homelessness is common, especially among trans people • Many LGBT people, who have no social supports or who experience discrimination, are vulnerable to risky sexual behaviour, such as promiscuity, exposure to HIV, prostitution, unwanted pregnancy and sexual exploitation
  • HETEROSEXUAL PRIVILEGE • If I pick up a magazine, watch TV, or play music, I can be certain my sexual orientation will be represented • When I talk about my relationships, I will not be accused of flaunting my sexual orientation • I do not have to fear that if my family or friends find out about my sexual orientation there will be economic, emotional, physical or psychological consequences • I did not grow up hearing slurs that attack my sexual orientation • I am not accused of having experienced abuse, or to be warped or confused because of my sexual orientation • I can easily find a religious community that will not exclude me for being heterosexual • I can count on finding a therapist or doctor willing and able to talk about my sexuality • I am not identified solely by my sexual orientation Thanks to Lisa Singh of Mohawk College who developed the list from which I borrowed the examples above
  • THE CLOSET • Discrimination and violence function to keep people closeted, hidden, ashamed, fearful • The closet is responsible for failed marriages, exposure of loved ones to HIV and other infectious diseases, exploitation, and other social problems • We have come a long way since the Stonewall Riots, but there are still people who live in fear – i.e. Catholic School Board’s position on GSAs, which promotes hate and legitimizes discrimination
  • WHEN HATE IS NOT CHALLENGED • When a society’s structures and institutions actively participate in the systematic exclusion and marginalization of certain identities based on sexual orientation, gender identity, class, etc. the entire society does not function properly – violence, discrimination, bullying, suicide, unemployment, poverty, depression, social isolation
  • GROWING UP GAY OR TRANS • Internalized oppression • Isolation – friends, society – depression, anxiety, addiction – increased risk of suicide • School – bullying – isolation – alienation • Family – pressure to conform – verbal, physical, mental and sometimes sexual abuse – rejection – homelessness Thanks to Lisa Singh of Mohawk College who developed this list
  • ENGAGING YOUTH • Queer and trans youth are particularly vulnerable to bullying, violence, exclusion, and are therefore at increased risk of suicide • Gay/Straight Alliances – locates responsibility for eradicating homophobia, transphobia and heterosexism with heterosexual cisgender people – solidarity in the face of oppression is powerful • RADAR Youth Group at The Well – Friday evenings – www.thewellhamilton.ca
  • BEING AN ALLY • Heterosexual and cisgender people who stand by and do nothing in the face of discrimination are assumed to be complicit in such oppression • When straight, cis people challenge homophobic and transphobic peers, it marginalizes the oppressor and causes a shift in the balance of power
  • BE AN ALLY • • • • • • • • • be non-judgmental use gender-inclusive and non-heterosexist language assume that anyone could be queer or trans do not ‘out’ people speak out against discrimination, including homophobic or transphobic jokes educate yourself foster respect at home, in the workplace, in the community practice inclusion stand in solidarity
  • THE HUMAN SERVICE WORKER ROLE • Human Service Workers – work in service to vulnerable populations – stand up for the underdog – assume that everyone has dignity and worth – are non-judgemental and person-centred – are open to, and are able to reflect upon different points of view – recognize their own biases and assumptions, and take responsibility for their own stuff
  • THE HUMAN SERVICE WORKER ROLE • Human Service Workers – advocate for, and employ strategies that promote social and economic justice, and challenge patterns of oppression – take responsibility for educating themselves about identities different from their own – are allies – are lesbian, gay, transgender, bisexual, heterosexual, asexual, etc.
  • A NOTE ON SELF-DISCLOSURE • When is it ok to disclose a personal detail about yourself to a client? – Is it ever ok? • Who benefits by said disclosure? – i.e. the client? the worker? • What is the goal? • Is it therapeutic? • Before embarking on a disclosure, the Human Service worker must reflect upon her or his own motivations for doing so